Some nasty ants-believed to be fire ants, have been found in six Lowe's Home improvement stores from Christiansburg to Charlottesville.
Ants have also been found in the Staunton store on Richmond Road.
Fire ants are known for their aggressive nature and painful stings.
The store in Staunton is destroying about 1,000 plants that arrived from a shipment last week because they may contain ants or ant larva.
Federal agriculture officials are testing the soil around the plants. If pesticides are not found in the dirt, the stores may face federal charges for sending infested plants across state lines.