Every year in late October, I notice strings of “silk” on fence posts, plants and even the sidewalk. My initial assumption was that it was caused by spiders, but one of my friends vehemently disagreed and said it was from plants. So of course, I had to look it up and find out the truth! […] Finish reading: Gossamer and Spiders in FallBugs in Your Garden
Redhumped caterpillars often appear in large numbers after a year with a mild winter. If you notice a tree with chewed or “skeletonized” leaves in late summer or fall, you might have this pest. Redhumped Caterpillar Identification Caterpillars are 1 1/2 inches long with a red hump behind the head. The body is yellow with […] Finish reading: Redhumped Caterpillar PestBugs in Your Garden
The threat of West Nile, Zika and viruses transmitted by mosquitoes is enough to send most people scurrying indoors. But what’s a gardener to do? We’re frequently outdoors morning, noon and/or night tending our plants. In the past, the Centers for Disease Control (CDC) instructed people to stay indoors at dusk since that’s when mosquitoes were […] Finish reading: Mosquitoes, Zika, West NileInsects in the Garden
Did you know that winter vegetables aren’t planted in winter, they’re planted in summer? Certain vegetable crops may need 6 weeks to a few months to grow from seed, such as cauliflower, cabbage, carrots, broccoli, collards, Brussels sprouts, and leeks. Now is also a good time to start mustard greens, beets, kale, spinach and herbs […] Finish reading: Plant Winter Vegetables in SummerVegetable Gardening
The culprit I found crawling on my container gardening veggie plants was none other than the infamous spider mite! Spider mites are insidious little critters that suck plant juices and cause plant leaves to turn yellow and wilt. Because they are microscopic, it’s easy to think your plants may just need fertilizer at first. This […] Finish reading: Container Gardening Post #3
I was very happy to have my friends Javier and Jill-Marie in attendance with me at a Bugs and Beer event. Javier was an experienced bug eater (he’d tried them in Cambodia), and although Jill-Marie had no intention of eating bugs, she would drink the beer I couldn’t finish and be there for moral support. […] Finish reading: Bugs & Beer: Entomophagy Part II
Most people I tell about my bug-eating experience react with disgust. However, believe it or not, entomophagy, (the human consumption of insects* and arachnids) is practiced by over 80% of the world. EIGHTY PERCENT! Why Bugs and Beer? The advertisement for this event intrigued me. I’d collected bugs for over two decades and taught classes […] Finish reading: Bugs & Beer: Entomophagy Part I
Many everyday occurrences in the bug world sound like science fiction. Unsuspecting hosts eaten alive by internal parasites, broken legs that regenerate, and females who eat their mates… I strongly suspect sci-fi writers found much inspiration for novels while reading about bugs. Take for instance, the fascinating assassin bug, which lies in ambush awaiting its […] Finish reading: Assassin Bug…Assassinates!
One of the most common misconceptions people have about ants is that they “attack” and eat plants. Although ants are pesky creatures, they cannot be blamed for munching on plants since they can’t digest plant fiber. So if you see them on your plants, they are usually “farming” other insects such as aphids, scale, whiteflies […] Finish reading: Ants on my Plants!!!