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Insects

What's Bugging You Today?

  By Sandra Nelson   Throughout my childhood, this was the defining (and to be perfectly honest, somewhat creepy) sound of summer to me… …the raucous calls of hundreds of emerging cicadas.   But the noise wasn’t the whole story  —  the crunchy abandoned shells scattered all over the place repelled me; I couldn’t wait …

What's Bugging You Today?

  By Sandra Nelson   I honestly thought that they had passed me by.  Then, this happened and I knew that my time was coming….Japanese beetles had arrived.     Accidentally introduced in 1916, the Japanese beetle has become one of the challenging of the insect pests to eradicate from the home landscape. Currently found …

What's Bugging You Today?

  By Sandra Nelson     Technically not a spider or an insect, the spider mite is a member of the arachnid family. (In case you’ve forgotten your grade school science, arachnids are invertebrates with exoskeletons, segmented bodies and at least three pairs of jointed legs.)  World wide there are literally thousands of varieties of …

What's Bugging You Today?

  By Sandra Nelson   Hanging like little Christmas ornaments from their host plants, these benign looking sacs are home to one of the more formidable insect enemies of the summer.   BAGWORMS         Bagworms, or more precisely Thyridopteryx ephemeraformis, feed on over 128 different species of common landscaping plants. Among their …

What's Bugging You Today?

By Sandra Nelson   Here in the Midwest, July seems to be the time when the insects take over the garden. Just this morning I found this critter hanging out in my carrot patch.     I was about to send him to the great caterpillar resting spot in the sky when a little voice …

Designing For Bees

  By Sandra Nelson  

The more I read about bees and their relatives, wasps and flies, the more fascinated I become with these tiny powerhouses and the more I understand why people are so passionate about providing for them and protecting them. As we mentioned in last week’s blog, honeybees may be the most well-known bee, …

Patience is the Key

  By Sandra Nelson   One of my favorite things to do this summer is to quietly sit on my deck, watching dozens of bees and butterflies flitting through the yard enjoying the nectar buffet I’ve planted. This is the first year that I’ve had a steady stream of visitors and it feels like the …

Preparing For Pollinators

  With all the Buzz about pollinators in the news lately (sorry, just couldn’t resist it), I thought that this might be a good time to think about adding a pollinator garden to the landscape.       For the past few years, flower and gardening magazines, websites and even home improvement television shows have …