Wednesday, August 28, 2013

The Hackberry

I have one large tree on my property. It's sad but true. Want to know what's even sadder? The one lone large tree on my property is a Hackberry and I absolutely abhor it! Well, in the latter part of the summer anyway. 

This time of year, the Hackberry (which my great-grandmother planted by the way) produces gobs and gobs of sap which inevitably ends up on my roof and the chairs on my porch and my car and it seems that every other day I'm washing something because of the sap situation. If the Hackberry wasn't the only large tree on my property, I might have it cut down, but it does provide a lot of shade and it's only annoying about three months out of the year so I guess I will continue to put up with it...for now. 

Not only does the tree produce massive amounts of sap, it also attracts aphids which eat sap. The aphids are little white bugs which look like lint but if you look closely you can see them moving around. After parking in my spot for just a few minutes there will be some combination of sap and aphids on the car. Now, I'm not sure if the tree saps more because of the aphids or exactly how that all works, just that aphids are not good according to my neighbor Jeff who is knowledgeable in all things flora. 

Lady bugs are natural attackers of aphids and will eat them and therefore rid you of your aphid problem so whenever I see a lady bug, I let her be because she is helping, not harming. Jeff always says that when the aphids are bad there were not enough lady bugs. Well, my friends, thank to the power of the World Wide Web, I have ordered 1550 lady bugs from Amazon of all places and they arrived today. I'm going to rid myself of this aphid problem and in turn hope that the sap problem subsides a little as well. I guess you can call this my summer of 2013 science experiment. 

When I opened up the package, I read the instructions carefully. I had seen online where the ladybugs needed to be released at dusk and I wanted to make sure that was correct. The paperwork actually said the lady bugs could be released at early evening which I guess is dusk and since it was in fact early evening, I went ahead and opened the sealed bag and shook a few of them out and then placed the bag at the foot of the tree and let the lady bugs come on out.

I don't know if this little experiment of mine will be successful, but I hope it will be and I will certainly keep you posted. 


Jackie said...

I am extremely excited to see how this works out. I used to love lady bugs until I moved into the cabin and every year around the same time we would get an infestation of them. They have a weird smell and it was awful but I do hope they handle your aphid problem. I learned a lot from this blog. Thanks for educating me:-)

Erika said...

haha - Hilarious to me that you can actually order live lady bugs over the internet.
They are very beneficial little bugs.
Can't wait to see how this experiment turns out!