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Gardening - It's not for the squeamish

All sorts of creepy crawlers live in the garden.
All sorts of creepy crawlers live in the garden.
Wikimedia Commons Public Domain

Yikes! Last year, my granddaughter and I were moving things around in my floral wheelbarrow when we uncovered a squirming pile of earwigs. Immediately she dropped what she was doing and looked at me with a horrific expression. I really should have said something like, "Sorry, sweetie, gardening is not for the squeamish." What actually came out was a hysterical belly laugh. You see, I've been there so many times. Gardening can be downright creepy and creepy crawly too. It really isn't for the faint of heart. Especially for those of us who garden organically.

How did we get rid of that pile of pincher bugs?

First I looked up a natural method. It involved using a small cup of vegetable oil as bait. For now, let's just say it didn't work. I'll give you the gory details later. Then I remembered, earwigs love moisture. So, we let the wheelbarrow garden go thirsty for a few days. Then, we soaked a rolled up newspaper in water, leaving it in the wheelbarrow overnight.. Now instead of a pile of pincher bugs, we had a pincher bug roll-up. Yummy! We burned it. Also an activity not meant for the squeamish, by the way. I'll spare you the gory details.

What happened with the vegetable oil, you ask?

My granddaughter and I, in our infinite wisdom, decided to bait all the garden beds with these little cups of oil, just in case. (This was before we discovered they don't work for pincher bugs.) Well, they were needed alright, just not for pincher bugs. About an hour later, we checked our clever traps. I've never seen so many ants drowned, drowning or marching to their ultimate demise. There were trails, pockets, groups, gatherings and mass burials. Apparently, we have ants in our garden beds. Who knew? That's the most disgusting thing I've ever seen in my garden. Except for the slugs.

Oh, do tell us about the slugs!

Now, I've already written about this once, but it bears repeating. If something is chewing on your plants in the garden, do not, I repeat, do not go in bare handed looking for it. What the heck is that crawling sensation on my hand?

Better question:

Have you ever seen a 50 something year old women run from her garden shaking her hand while screaming at the top of her lungs? If you have, I'm guessing she sat her hand in a pile of squirmy slugs. Oh yes, I did.

How to get rid of slugs in the garden:

I hope you don't find your slugs the same way I found mine. I hope you actually see them before they start crawling up your arms. At any rate, you'll need to know how to get rid of them. Slugs love beer. Slugs drown in beer. Bury a small open container filled with beer in your garden. It's a slug magnet. They crawl in and drown. Every last one of them. Do it now, trust me. Gardening is not for the squeamish. Being one step ahead of the creepy crawlies is not to be taken lightly.

This article was previously published by this author on a now closed Yahoo property.

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