Beware of Spiders. Be especially careful with the Brown Recluse (Brown with beige fiddle shape on the back (sometimes))
I had a scary event with one fairly large spider once upon a time.
Mr. Ray Zebra, Gardening
Reference your article: Spiders eat insects, save your plants (not your life)
Thank you for updating me about the Argiope Spider. I had an encounter 18 years ago with one of these beautiful creatures.
I was mowing a two acre yard with an old snapper lawn mower that did not have a clutch or brakes. You simply jammed the gear shift forward or backwards to move about. Late one afternoon, I was hurriedly trying to mow the yard and as I neared the county road, yard side of a giant oak tree (80 inch trunk circumference), I encountered a “banana spider” on a web strung from a limb to the ground (30 to 35 inch circumference). The limb extended about 75 feet across the front of my yard. I could not stop the mower in time and my nose was exactly in line with the Argiope spider. This is where I disagree with your article about fear and hurt.
As I traveled through the spider web, the Argiope stared back at me through my own bifocals which made her eyes seem about ten times as large. She, very aggressively, hung to each of my ears with her long legs. This is not a moment in life that you stop and wink at a female.
Instead, I attempted to slap her off my nose. However, the distance that we had traveled from the original web permitted her to bungee jump high into the tree while I slapped my new $175.00 pair of bifocals into the grass ahead of the mower and before I could jam the gearshift in reverse, I could hear the crunching of glass and the spitting of the frames across the yard.
Anger set in with a desire to kill the Argiope; regardless of what you say. My truck sat in the drive way and I knew my chain saw was in the back along with a gallon of gasoline. My extension ladder was in sight so I quickly set the ladder up about 30 feet out from the tree trunk to prune the limb. My wife joined in when she saw the commotion and held the ladder. I climbed the ladder to about 12 feet above ground with saw purring. I quickly sawed off the remaining 40 to 45 feet of limb and foliage.
The Argiope was getting even with me for destroying her home. About 2 tons of limb crashed to the ground and the remaining 30 feet shot skyward because of the loss of weight. This upward bow movement was greater than the total length of my ladder. The Argiope had left me in a lurch with a live chain saw, a moving limb, and dangerous situation since I did not have my glasses and could not see too well.
I did manage to throw the chain saw away from my Wife and far out into the yard. Actually, it was far enough to hit the side of my Truck and kind of make a few very deep gouges in the side of the truck bed. God intervened at this moment because he felt the anger I had for the Argiope. God actually moved a knot on the side of the limb down to where my ladder was. The knot snagged the top rung of the ladder just as my Wife turned loose of the lower end and took off to the hills running and shouting.
This left me swinging from a knot on a limb, by the top rung of an extension ladder while the bottom half of the ladder slowly adjusted itself automatically (or with God’s help) to compensate for the changed distance from the limb to the ground.
For the life of me, I do not know where the Argiope went. As I shinnied down the ladder doing the firemen’s slide, I remember thinking how beautiful the Argiope really is and I should feel bad about destroying her home! Thank you God for beautiful creatures.
I loved the meat rabbit tip. Let the chickens in the garden for bug control. A nanny goat that is milking is also great for fresh milk and meat if desperate.
YOU HAVE NEVER WORKED SO HARD IN YOUR LIFE AS YOU WILL TRYING TO FARM, I WAS RAISED ON A FARM A LONG WITH THREE BROTHERS AND A SISTER AND WE ALL HAD TO WORK, PLANTING THE CROPS,KEEPING THE GRASS AWAY FROM THE PLANTS, AND GRATHERING THE GROPS. I'M HERE TP TELL YOU IT IS WORK, BUT A VERY SATIFING WORK WHEN YOU SEE THE CROPS BEING HARVESTED. PLEASE DON'T BUY A PESTISIDE TO KELL THE BUGS THAT WILL GET ON YOUR VEGGIES THERE IS A NATURAL NON POISONUS POWER YOU CAN GET. FEEDING CHICKENS IS SOMETHING I'M GOING TO START RAISING AGAIN, THEN I'LL KNOW WHAT THEY HAVE BEEN FED. YOU CAN DO WHAT YOU SET YOUR MIND TO DO IF YOU HAVE MY LORD HELPING YOU, SO PRAY AND ASK MY LORD JESUS TO GUIDE YOU, ALL WILL GO WELL FOR THEN.
GOD BLESS AND GOOD LUCK
We have a 10x10 raised bed area at the end of our patio and grow tomatoes, cucumbers, onions, carrots, asperagus and broccoli. Our Arizona sun can be pretty scorching in the summer so we rigged a frame out of 1 inch pipe and cover it with shade screen.
In the winter we cover the frame on 3 sides with greenhouse film and have 2 removable, film covered doors in the front. At night we turn on our little heater and open the doors during the day. Had one tomato plant that grew for almost 2 years. We use automatic waterers so the water goes right to the plant. May have a big problem though if we ever lose our water. .