Tuesday, October 6, 2015
Evicting Old Tenants (31 Days of Nest Building: day 6)
Spider clip art image by Cliparts.co
I’ve mentioned the spiders, right? In the absence of people, nature had begun claiming the house. Literally.
Vines infiltrated windows in two separate locations. Yes, two. Grape vines spiraled through the office window screen in multiple places leaving gaping tears once ripped out, and some other sort of vine hung three feet into a basement window, calling to mind the destructive, untamed raspberry vines in the book Where’d You Go, Bernadette? (A fun read, by the way. Highly recommend it.)
The wasp hive (or hornet or whatever—I’m not an expert, nor do I wish to be) outside my bedroom window was the largest I had ever seen.
Then, of course, the spiders. Varying in size from almost-mistaken-for-dust (if they hadn’t been moving) to get-my-biggest-heaviest-shoe-because-I-don’t-want-to-miss.
Now that the house was mine, it was time to evict all these old tenants.
I pulled the vine from outside the basement window to make sure it wouldn’t continue growing in. The landscapers tackled the vine that was destroying my office screen, mostly because it required trudging through overgrown ivy and I didn’t want to know what other old tenants might be in there.
My husband tackled the hive by leaning out the bedroom window with an entire can of wasp and hornet spray, extreme bravery, and (once assuredly nullified) a broom handle. I left the pieces of the hive in the landscaping below for a good week before donning gloves to trash it. (I could say I left it as a warning to other stinging creatures who dared trespass, but I just didn’t want to touch it.)
As for the spiders I began by sweeping the foyer then moving on to their friends and habitats in all corners of the house. I swept high and low until all webs and crawlers were gone.
Of course, spiders have a way of coming back, so I still find one now and then, particularly in the basement.
There is also one that I have never seen, but that rebuilds a funnel web on my front step no matter how many times I sweep it away. That’s the spider that scares me the most because I never see it and his web looks like it might suck you in.
There was one I had to knock down from the sliding glass door two days in a row, but I haven’t seen it again.
Mostly, I think the spider situation is under control.
So, of course, that means there were ants just outside my front door this week. I think I’ve mostly taken care of them. I see an occasional straggler, but the army seems to be gone.
I like nature. Really, I do. I just prefer that it stays outside.
Throughout October, I will be continuing this story of getting acquainted with my home and making it my own as part of the 31 dayschallenge. Catch up on any posts you may have missed here: 31 Days of Nest Building.