I’m new to the south and with that comes an education on bugs. It’s a huge learning curve but I’m learning as I go. I have found that Black Flea Beetles are BAD for eggplant as they quickly decimated my plants. Oh course this sent cheers of glee from my family who do not like eggplant. However, much to their disappointment I’m attempting round two with new plants and spray next week.
I quickly have learned that what looks like a cute lady bug is really a potato beetle. So far I’ve have not spotted these in my garden but I saw them yesterday in a participants garden on a site visit. We went around and got most of them off and I got to see the different sizes. This will help me to identify them in my own garden.
The biggest surprise that I received was not a bug or beetle but a snake. Last week when I came into the garden I discovered it was caught in my blueberry netting. After taking a couple of pictures, a few text messages, and a quick google search on my phone I had determined that it was a Black Rat Snake. I knew from what I had read that they were great to have around. So operation rescue snake started. Now I hate snakes…with a passion! So this alone is a statement for having a true organic garden.
My adrenaline was pounding as I got a knife out and began the farthest away from its head. I had to take the knife along his skin because he was in there so tight. He had wound himself back and forth in the netting in about 15+ holes and had injured himself in one area, but I knew with his tongue moving back and forth and his constant watch that he was going to make it.
It took me over two hours, several phone calls to my husband encouraging me to carry on, screams which sent the dogs running to my rescue, (had to pin them up) and finally a neighbor to hold down it’s head because now he was free enough to have a striking distance of a good foot, he was free. WOW…what an exciting morning.
Unfortunately that was only the start of my morning. I quickly gathered my supplies to head off for some site visits, when the dogs started barking at our bees. Upon inspection between the bees and the dogs was another SNAKE….small but still a snake. I knew this one could be dangerous possibly a copperhead, so I ran into the garage for backup, however when I returned it was gone. Oh what a day…Bugs, Beetles, & Snakes… Gardening is such an adventure!!! I’m still jumping at every sound and scanning the ground whenever I’m in the garden. Heads up out there in the gardening world.