Managing Termites in Your Garden or Yard

What Should I do if I Find Termites in my Garden or Yard?

If you find termites in your garden or yard, act immediately to prevent damage. Start by not disturbing the termites or their nests. Identify the infestation area by looking for signs like mud tubes or damaged wood, but avoid direct interference with the termites. Remove potential food sources such as wood debris and ensure your garden has proper drainage to reduce moisture. For effective and safe treatment, contact a professional pest control service like Orkin. Follow their expert advice for treatment and preventive measures to protect your property from these destructive pests.

Termites in the Garden: What You Need to Know

Finding termites in your garden or yard can be alarming, as these small but destructive pests pose a significant threat to your property’s safety and integrity. It’s crucial to recognize the importance of swift and effective action in managing and controlling a termite infestation. Once you find termites, it is important to follow steps that include avoiding the area and calling a professional.

This is where Orkin’s expertise becomes invaluable. As a leader in pest control, Orkin offers professional and reliable solutions to identify and manage termite infestations. With their comprehensive approach, Orkin professionals assess the extent of the infestation, identify the termite species, and develop a customized treatment plan tailored to your specific situation.

Old and grunge wood board was eating by group of termitesOld and grunge wood board was eating by group of termites

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Termites are social insects living in colonies, and they can be found in nearly every region of the United States, especially abundant in the South and Southeast. They feed on wood, including fence posts, garden stakes, and even fallen limbs in your yard. While subterranean termites are the most common, other species also exist, each with unique characteristics and behaviors.

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To protect your home from pests, click here for a free pest control estimate. Our Orkin Pros will create a personalized pest treatment plan for your home or business

or Call (866) 249-0292

Signs of Termites in Your Yard

When it comes to identifying termites in your yard, being vigilant about the signs is crucial. Termites might be small, but the clues they leave behind can be quite noticeable if you know what to look for. 

  • Hollow-sounding Wood – Termites consume wood from the inside out, which often leaves a thin veneer of timber or paint. When you tap on an area that has termite damage, it will sound hollow due to parts of the wood being eaten away. This is particularly noticeable in wooden structures like garden sheds, fence posts, and decking.
  • Mud Tubes – Subterranean termites, the most common type found in yards, build mud tubes for protection as they travel between their colony and food source. These tubes are about the diameter of a pencil and can be found on exterior walls, foundations, and even in crawl spaces. They are made of tiny pieces of soil, wood, and debris and are a clear indicator of termite presence.
  • Swarm Evidence – A termite swarm is when winged termites, also known as alates, leave their nest to start a new colony. After swarming, these termites shed their wings, so finding piles of tiny wings in your garden, especially near light sources, is a sign of a nearby termite colony. Swarms often occur in spring but can happen at other times of the year as well.
  • frass or Termite Droppings – Drywood termites, which are less common in gardens but still a potential threat, leave behind droppings known as frass. This frass looks like small, wood-colored pellets and is often found near infested wood. Spotting these can indicate an active termite infestation.
  • Damaged or Dying Trees and Plants – Termites feed on cellulose, which is found in wood and plants. If you notice trees or plants in your garden that are unexpectedly dying or showing signs of damage, it could be due to termites. Check for any signs of tunneling or hollowed-out wood at the base of trees or in branches.
  • Changes in Soil and Foundation – Subterranean termites can cause changes in the soil structure around your home’s foundation. Look for unusual patterns in the dirt or mud, such as small mounds or irregularities. These could be signs of termite tunnels just below the surface.

What to do If You Find Termites?

Discovering termites in your garden or yard can be a cause for concern, as these pests can cause significant damage to your property. It’s essential to know the right steps to take to effectively manage and control the infestation.

Do Not Disturb

First and foremost, avoid disturbing the termites, including their colonies or mud tubes. Disturbing them can cause the termites to scatter, potentially spreading the infestation to other areas of your yard or even into your home. Instead, take a step back and try to identify the extent of the infestation. Look for additional signs of termites in nearby wood structures, trees, and soil, but do so gently to avoid agitating the termites.

Focus on removing potential food sources for the termites. This includes any cellulose-containing materials like wood, leaf litter, mulch, and dead plants, especially those close to your home. Store firewood off the ground and away from your house and regularly clear your yard of debris. Additionally, termites thrive in moist environments, so it’s important to manage moisture in your yard. Ensure proper drainage, repair any leaky faucets or water pipes, and avoid over-watering your garden, particularly near your home’s foundation.

Call a Professional 

The most effective step you can take is to call a professional pest control service like Orkin. Professionals can accurately identify the termite species, assess the extent of the infestation, and recommend an effective treatment plan. They have the expertise and equipment to handle the situation safely and effectively. Once you’ve engaged a professional, it’s crucial to follow their advice closely, which may include preparing your yard for treatment and undertaking preventive measures to avoid future infestations.

Regular Monitoring 

After the initial treatment, regular monitoring of the affected area and your yard is important to detect any new termite activity early. Implement preventive measures to avoid future infestations, such as treating the soil around your home, maintaining a termite barrier, and making thoughtful changes to your garden layout to reduce the risk of termite attraction. By taking these steps, you can effectively manage a termite infestation in your yard or garden and protect your property from these destructive pests. Remember, early detection and professional intervention are key to controlling termites effectively.

Orkin’s Approach to Termite Control

Orkin professionals are trained to manage termites effectively. Our approach includes:

  • Inspection – Identifying the termite species and the extent of the infestation.
  • Customized Treatment Plans – Tailoring treatments to your specific situation.
  • Ongoing Prevention – Regular monitoring and maintenance to prevent future infestations.

Frequently Asked Questions

How can I tell if I have termites in my garden?

Look for signs like mud tubes on structures, hollow-sounding wood, swarms of winged termites, or discarded wings. These are common indicators of a termite infestation.

Are termites in the garden a threat to my house?

Yes, termites in the garden can migrate to your house, especially if there is wood-to-soil contact or if your home’s foundation is exposed to moist soil.

What should I do first if I find termites?

Avoid disturbing them and try to identify the extent of the infestation without direct interference. Then, contact a professional pest control service like Orkin for an assessment and treatment plan.

Can I treat termites in my yard myself?

While there are DIY methods, professional treatment is recommended for effectiveness and safety. Termites can be challenging to eradicate completely without professional expertise and tools.

How often should I inspect my garden for termites?

Conduct a basic inspection at least once a year. However, if you live in an area prone to termites, more frequent inspections are advisable.

What are some preventive measures to keep termites away?

Remove potential food sources like wood debris, maintain proper garden drainage, reduce wood-to-soil contact, and consider professional preventive treatments.

Is professional termite treatment safe for my garden?

Yes, professionals like Orkin use treatment methods that are safe for your garden while effectively targeting termite infestations.

After treatment, how do I ensure termites don’t return?

Regular inspections, maintaining a termite barrier, and following the preventive advice of your pest control professional are key to keeping termites at bay.


Dealing with termites in your garden or yard is a task that requires immediate attention and the right approach to prevent them from causing significant damage to your property. Understanding the signs of termite presence, such as mud tubes, hollow-sounding wood, and swarms, is the first step in tackling this issue. Once you’ve identified the problem, it’s crucial to act swiftly but cautiously, avoiding any actions that might disturb the termites and cause them to spread.

The importance of professional assistance in this scenario cannot be overstated. Companies like Orkin, with their expertise in pest control, play a pivotal role in not only addressing the current infestation but also in providing long-term solutions to prevent future occurrences. Their tailored approach, which includes thorough inspections, customized treatment plans, and ongoing preventive strategies, ensures that your garden and home are protected from the destructive nature of termites.

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To protect your home from pests, click here for a free pest control estimate. Our Orkin Pros will create a personalized pest treatment plan for your home or business

or Call (866) 249-0292