Thursday, August 4, 2016

A Buggy Time of Year

The cicadas are singing their little cicada tunes
this time of year, shedding their exoskeletons
to leave a ghost body literally hanging onto
whatever they last rested on.

The bugginess has really arrived in the garden.
Other than a few early worms we have been quite lucky
until my husband found our first squash bugs mating
on his tomatillos. Unfortunately for one couple, 
the honeymoon was cut short.

I will start my annual ritual of wrapping duct tape
around my hand, sticky side out, while inspecting 
the underside of leaves for their eggs, 
beautiful little gems from which emerge such
a horrible plague of squash sucking beasts.

Occasionally I miss a few and return to find
tiny juveniles clustered together.  I quickly
push my duct taped hand to them so they are 
literally glued to it, fold over the tape and squeeze.

My husband says Mama squash bugs warn their
children that they must be good or 
the sticky handed lady that will visit.
This is the thing squash bug nightmares are made of.

The fight is on-
just as soon as a tomato begins to redden
something rips it off the vine, leaving only teeth marks
but not consuming the fruit.  That's the frustrating thing.
It's one after the other after the other,
We have water in a ground level tub so it's not thirsty.
It obviously does not enjoy the tomato, why go for more?
Raccoon?  The pretty Fox that walked by me?
We're not sure but my husband is on the warpath.

Then there is this sneaky little pest.
Poison ivy hiding among the weeds.
Luckily I pull that area with gloves
but I'll grab the trimmers this weekend and 
cut this back as much as I can.

On the bright side, my hibiscus bloomed!
Magnificent!  The bumbles are happy and 
I am glad for another pop of color in August.



This is cute! I like the sticky hand [duct tape trick I must try it]..Hope you don't find too many critters.

Gorges Smythe said...

Our 17 year "locusts" are long gone here, leaving us with the regular yearly kind. They don't usually get as deafening, though they CAN some years.

LindaG said...

We have poison ivy everywhere. Even in the grass.
Your garden still looks good, and your hibiscus is beautiful!

Harry Flashman said...

I spray poison ivy. I get the spray at the farmer's depot. It's not supposed to kill other plants but I have never used it in a garden.

Powell River Books said...

We caught another woodrat (packrat) this morning. That makes five so far this month. They are early this year, usually they don't arrive to nibble off my plants until September. - Margy

Kathy Felsted Usher said...

The poison ivy is near the bees so I can't spray anything. I just keep cutting which always lets it come back.

I remember looking at your pack rat. It is the most adorable rat I have ever seen! Sort of like one of those fat little cartoon mice that you want to hug. I'm sure it is not all that much fun if they are in your home but they sure are cute.