The Gardens - In the Beginning

Friday, April 18, 2014

Trowel and Error




ticks





ticks





and





more
ticks
!
!
!


Growing up were the days of bare feet tickled by the grass between our toes as we sat in the middle of a sea of green in our front yard.  Our fears were of fire ants, horseflies, and irate bumblebees...small potatoes compared to my days now in the not so deep south.  It's never a question of shoes or shoe-less.  If it's not rock or concrete or winter, it's gear up for battle time...socks, lace-up shoes, long pants with legs that are tuck-able into your socks and a gallon of pyrethrins spray to douse said shoes and pant legs up to the knees.

With a lethal dog by my side and trowel in hand, I dare any tick to take a taste of my poison coated hound or wander up my poison coated gear...I dare you, dare you, dare you!  Ops! Forgot the poison coated hat for all you little ticksters that like to climb to high places and drop onto my head for dinner.  I LOVE the south.  I LOVE the south.  I LOVE the south.


















Widows...more of an enigma of our imaginations out west, it was horror time when one was actually spotted and a day to remember in infamy.  Big fat black spider with red hourglass, right?  Well, sort of...not prepared for what the south had to offer, they lived quite comfortably in my garage for a season until a bit of education hit me squarely between the eyes.  I was living with the enemy!  My Bad.

Black widows, brown widows, big widows, little widows, red hourglass, red three dots...these buggers don't know when enough is enough in these lands.  Widow fighting gear...insecticide that slows it down so a shovel can bash it to smithereens.  I'm sad to say it's a worn out saying in these gardens these days...if a rock has laid on the ground for more than five minutes a widow will be living under it.  So true.


















Brown recluse...more black than brown...looooong legs.  I don't know how else to identify one.  Saw a live one at a bug museum once, saw a live one on my living room carpet by the edge of the coffee table trying to get away from a clueless curious Lacey once.  That's two times too much.  I still can't identify one.  While it was in the small mason jar before I flushed it down the toilet it was a stretch of my imagination to say I could make out a clear fiddle on any of it, but it WAS a brown recluse.  The house reeked of insecticide the day after!!!






















For this chick who's lived at the equator (bug purgatory) for a few years, anything the upper south throws at me is a piece of cake...


except


brown recluses,


widows


and


ticks



especially 
ticks


hundreds


thousands


zillions 
of
ticks





4 comments:

  1. LOVE the photo of the tulip leaves (I think it is tulip leaves, at any rate) with the dead leaf impaled on it. Love the look of that green, thick coiled and hairy ropy plant. What IS that?

    Have no fear; we have tons of ticks up north too...and brown recluses. Not sure about black widows, but we have enough disgusting bugs here too to make one shiver their timbers.

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. Lily of the Valley is the one growing up through the dead leaf and unable to unfurl. I'll set it free today by removing the leaf.
      The other is Christmas Fern. Love the way fern leaves come up in coils, and gradually unfurl into all those lovely leaves. Never worried about ticks in Nevada or when I lived in Colorado Springs. I think it is the altitude that makes the difference.

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  2. your photos are lovely! It's a shame that we use so many chemicals to get rid of bugs. It's still not warm enough here to get outside and plant...but I am anxoua!!!

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. Sometimes I pour pyrethrins down ant holes to keep my yard from being all ant hills, and pyrethrins are sprayed on the bottom part of the bird house poles to keep ants from living in the bird houses and eating the babies. Other than that we don't use insecticides. The gardens attract many birds and we rely on them to keep the ticks down. I don't ever collect tons of ticks when I garden, but they are out there and just one on you that you don't catch in time can slightly ruin your life. Last frost dates are hard to figure out. I'm anxious to plant my veggies. Hope you are feeling well.

      Delete

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