Sunday, June 15, 2008

Bugging Dad

Websters Dictionary defines the word Bug as: An insect or other creeping or crawling invertebrate.

Bugs are found amongst our vegetable and flower gardens. Here are a few bugs I have spotted in my gardens.

Walking Stick...
These things are named walking sticks due to their similarities to a small stick of a tree. I spot them often in our yard. They like to eat Ivy, Privet and Lettuce.

Mystery Bug:

Does anyone know what this skeleton bug is called? I have seen them all my life and never really knew what they were until researching the following bug. I knew they start out their life in the ground as I dug several of them up as white pupa in the garden soil a few weeks ago. They are a true sign that summer has arrived...

The cicada is a really scary looking bug but not harmful in any way except to sapling trees. They are referred to as the Dry Fly in Appalachian Mountain area. There are 2500 species around the globe and people eat them in some countries! I found many interesting facts with a click of the finger on the Internet. Check out this site for some additional info on the Cicada...

Wingless Wasp, Velvet Ant, Cow Killer:
Here is a Wingless Wasp (as we call them) that I spotted in our yard just today. Perfect timing for this posting! The hair on their body looks like red Velvet hence the name, Velvet Ant. They are about an inch long in size. The one you see here in our yard is a female because she has no wings. The males have wings. They feed on nectar and other insects larvae and only the female can sting you if pestered or stepped on. They get the nickname Cow-killer from farmers working in fields many years ago without shoes on their feet. When stung from stepping on one, they say the sting hurts so badly that it could kill a cow! In reality they cannot kill a cow but I would stay clear of them when you come upon one. The simple rule to remember is, When seeing Red on a insect such as the hour glass shape of the Black Widow Spider, stay clear!

Unknown to me:
I have no idea what name to give these beetle bugs. We often find them when moving a log or under the moist leaves.

Unknown to me:
Another unknown bug but strange enough looking creature for me to run grab the camera! Look at the size of those eyes! They are not really eyes but appear to be so.

Unknown to me:
How ironic, as I was preparing this posting, look what I spotted on the window screen in front of me! Look at those pincher's! Ouch to a finger if pestered...

Millipedes and Centipedes:

Here is a Millipede bug that we often see in our yard. Upon research, I found out that Millipedes are a hard shelled relative to the Lobster and Shrimp! They are a slow mover and when touched, they roll up into a ball. As children we called these type bugs Ball Bugs or Roly Poly's. They are beneficial to a garden. They mainly eat old leaves and live in moist areas but they can do harm to saplings with lack of decaying leaves.

This is the Bug we found in a cavern underneath our azalea bush in the driveway island. They were each encased in a dried mud cocoon. Their hatching season is currently happening as I have been spotting them all over the yard.

With my research, I discovered that a Centipede does not have a hard shell, is fast moving and they eat other insects. So they are also beneficial in the garden. I do not have a picture of a centipede.

Unknown to me:

Another unknown bug but seen often by us in the garden. This one was on the bloom of the trumpet vine. I hope he was eating something other then the bloom but without a name for this bug, I may never know what he does in the garden...


The Bee is a great friend in the Garden. The Bee is a great pollinator for flowers and blooming veggies! So don't swat that Bee when you see him...

Another beneficial Bug in the Garden would be one of my favorite bugs. She is Red and has Black spots. Of course, I am talking about the...
I borrowed this Lady Bug picture from the Internet. Lady Bugs are a true friend in the Garden as they eat aphids. We have lots of Lady Bugs in our gardens and also in our house during the winter months.

Websters Dictionary also defines the word Bug as: To Bother, annoy...

As a child I would bug my dad and in return he would bug me! We would not bug each other in a bad way but a fun loving picking at each other kind of bugging manner. We still bug each other today as well.

One time while home visiting my family, my dad was really bugging me. I happen to be in a store and spotted a bag of plastic bugs. I could not resist and I gave them to him and told him to be a good boy and play with the bugs and stop bugging me. Well, the game began that day...

When we are together, we plant bugs in different spots for the other to come across at some point. It may take a while for him and I to find all the bugs but at some point we always seem to find them. One time while home, I sneak into his closet and filled his shirt pockets with little bugs. He found bugs all winter long and with each find, he would call me or email me about it. I know this sounds a bit juvenile to some but it is our little way of continuing to Bug each other even when the other one is Miles away.

We have one bug we call the Special Bug. She is of course a Lady Bug. We make sure to place her in a spot to be easily found without loosing her as she is after all, The Special Bug!

My dad has been a big influence with my love of nature from the time I was a child and we went camping to our little unspoken competition we have of who's yard looks the best since I became an adult. We are both known to be out after dark to get the yard just right before the other arrives for a visit!

Here are some of the beauties which my dad has planted over the years.

With our latest visit home to Tennessee, I took dad a Butterfly Bush as an early Fathers Day gift. He and I planted it together and I hope it fills his days with beauty and lots of butterflies as well.

Here is dad and I many years ago in Texas. Older picture I know but a good picture of the two of us together...
Happy Fathers Day to my Big Daddy and to all Fathers out there today! May the love of your Children always be with you....

I may be all grown up now but I will never stop Bugging Dad, so be looking for those bugs, In the Garden ...


  1. Good morning all! And Happy Father's Day to my father and all the men in my life; including my son, my husband, my stepfather and my uncle.

    Skeeter, I have no idea what half those bugs were. Good pics though. I will have to remember the 'bugging' story for my kids. So cute. Helps put a spin on what kids can sometimes do to both parents-bug them of course! Your Dad's sedum and potato vines and all of it looks very nice indeed.

  2. Good morning Tina. How ironic that Dave posted on the Japanese willow and that is indeed what the bush is that my dad has! Also notice how ironic that the picture of he and I in San Antonio, we are in front of the same flowers as he has in his yard! Did not notice this until I posted them and looked at it...

    Hope all daddies are having a good time being spoilt by their children today. My dad plans to be rolling on the Cumberland today with one of my brothers... Have fun all, whatever you do...

    The cats told me to make daddy some homemade pancakes again for breakfast... tee hee...

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  4. Just me Tina, I was studdering...

  5. Good post! Hope everyone has a great day!

  6. What a neat post Skeeter and anyone that thinks the "bugging game" is juvenile is a pretty cold person cause it is a truly special bond of love that will live forever.

    I don't ever remember seeing or hearing of a walking stick bug but it looks neat to me. Thanks for sharing it.

    Hope all the Dad's have a great day and lets all say a pray for Luke, Tim Russets's beloved son and thank God that we had Tim Russet for a while.

  7. Whoops, so darn upset about Tim Russet I forgot to say, we are actually getting some rain. Rah rah!!!

  8. Wow, Your dads garden looks wonderful! Very good pictures of the bugs, I like the skeletal ones, they look like a trudging army across the rail on their way to a mission.
    Happy father's day to all the guys out there!

  9. Thanks Jillybean! You have a great day also and tell hubby to watch out for falling trees! LOL...

    Jean, it is difficult to spot the walking sticks as they look so much like a small twig! Really interesting looking creature...
    It is really sad about Tim Russet and all fathers not around on Fathers Day. That is a really sad point for me during Mothers and Fathers day. I feel sorry for those which are no longer with their children...

    Dawn, that is a funny picture and I got a chuckle out of it when it was sent to me. Ya see, my dad lined up all the cicada skeletons and then snapped the picture and sent it to me! This is the joy of the game for us, you never know what type of bug will show up and at any time of day also. We think of each other when we spot bugs.... Simple thing in life but joyful for me....

    We got all of 1/10 inch of rain. Not much but every little bit helps. I had watered some stuff last night so this little will help out for sure...

    I thought the Saint wanted to sit on butt and do nothing today but he wants to head to town so off we go. Am sure there will be some Ice Cream in the deal at some point. Just wish the Teaberry were around to check out....

  10. Hey everyone! I promised I would stay out of the garden, zain't happin... Darn. Many bugs out today. Skeeter, your dad made a cute pic of the skeletons. I collect them for some reason and never thought of doing this. Cute indeed. When I was in art in high school, we had to draw them. I loved it. Good luck finding teaberry stuff Skeeter. ttyl

  11. Forgot to say Skeeter, that is neat Dave posted the pics you are familiar with. Gardening is truly universal.

  12. Skeeter, If I had an account at the leaf's website, I would surely comment there, but I don't so here will have to do. The black eyes and glads look so great together! They grow in the garden? Wow. Bad ole kitties for eating them. And you have a lovely house. I see those new windows. Like them and the hardwood floors. They look super great. Someday for me too. So here will do?:)

  13. Great pictures of bugs --just what my boys love:) And, Happy Father's Day to one and all! Nice hot day and spending time with hubby before he heads off to work. Skeeter if I put a salt lick my hubby would think I was teasing him by getting the deer so close to the house and he can't get them, lol. You know he is a hunter --saw another bunny in my yard today --last one hubby caught and hand carried him back up the road to the farmers field:) My plants would like the bunny to stay a little further away --he ate my stuff down to nubs last year. Off to check on dinner --a surprise for daddy --lasagna. I made it early this morning and have it baking now:) Yum-yum! Oh wait --not me saying yum-yum -it is hubby's favorite. (But I love it too)

  14. Thanks Tina and we do love the new windows... Have Cellular Blinds on order for sun room but still looking for front of house. Too pricey for now. Yep, all those flowers are from my garden! A few Susans and the orange Glad were falling over to the ground and I decided they needed to come inside. I plucked a few things here and there and before I knew it, I had an entire arrangement! First of the year for the house and after reading the Pet People Blog, you can guess, probably the last of the season... Cats and Flowers dont mix....

    Anonymous, I tell my brother (the hunter) to keep his gun at home also! LOL... Lasagna, whew, one of my favorites! Saint had fish at a Fish Camp in SC on Friday. Homemade pancakes for breakfast today and yesterday. Mexican down the street with margaritas yesterday and today he is making homemade tamales! He has been one spoilt one this weekend but today he chose to cook instead of go out again... We love to cook and should stay home and cook more often. Our food is so much better then in town but their margaritas are so much better then ours... LOL...

  15. Tamales were yum-o...

    The rain passed us by again. All south of us, this go round. ARgggg. Last night just before we went to bed, I looked outside and saw 5 deer on the garden side of the house! I freaked as I knew they were going to destroy the garden but they only ate grass then moved on. So since we did not have any rain today, I went into the garden to put down a fresh batch of smelly stuff to deter critters. The bunny was under the garden bench munching on a plum as I sprinkled the stuff around two hosta. I talked to the bunny and told him not to eat the hosta. I was within 2 feet of him this time. He is trying his best to be my friend and get into the house! LOL....

    Going to be another day of watering again tomorrow. Arggggg...

  16. Anonymous, Lasagne sounds good. We had barbeque beef, leftover from last night; which was the real fathers day dinner for Mr. Fix-it. Who, finally fixed the spa and pool! Both done-yahoo! Garden day tomorrow-still got weeds! Tell hubby if he lived out here, the deer would be in his fridge by now.

    Mom, So glad you got some rain! Sad day for all with Tim Russert's passing, nice of you to think of his son.

    Skeeter, Bunny is winning you over-I can tell. I hear they get along real with kitties. Orkin is a big sister to my two bunnies. Might save the hostas. Glad the deer moved on. Not sure what tamales are, but as long as they are not spicy, they sound good to me!

  17. Hi Tina --glad you got the pool and hot tub all set. You will be able to cool off after weeding now:) I'll be eating lasagna for DAYS --none of the kids will touch it --picky eaters here. Hubby enjoyed it though:) Boy one is covered in chigger bites --from his attempt to catch a bunny out in the field. I am happy to see the bunnies but worry about what they will eat --they appear as my watermelon plants start flowering, beans are getting taller --it's like they have a radar telling them where to go, rofl. Skeeter --you make me laugh --this bunny is trying to trick you into thinking he is your friend, hahaha. Then, he'll hand out a blueprint of your yard to all the other neearby bunnies:) hehehehe
    Hi Jean -so happy you finally got some much deserved rain. Stay cool! Very busy day coming up tomorrow --all four kiddos have cleaning appointments, ball game, scouts --fun, fun fun:) See y'all!

  18. Great pictures Skeeter. What is the ground cover-like plant in the solarium photo? It looks almost like a moss. That's a neat idea. I think those skeleton bugs are the larval stage of the cicadas. They molt and leave them behind. We'll be seeing them soon brood 13 I think.

  19. Yeah Mr Fixit! Got that pool and spa working! I told you it would all come together Tina... Tamales, hum the best I can describe are Steamed Mexican cornbread with meat filling. LOL... Yes, bunny is working me....

    You have a busy day tomorrow Anonymous. Have fun....

    Dave, it is moss. I believe it came from the old house and was in the two planters at one time. The planters also came from the old house. Made from an old hot water heater way back in time. LOL... So pretty they decided to keep it when it fell to the ground and covered the pea gravel...

    Yes the skeleton things are Cicada skins. I should have clarified that in the posting. I did not know what they were until I did research on the Cicada and then discovered that info. I was wondering all these years and now I know.... Did you spot the Japanese Willow? Hope you had a nice day with the girls today...

    Good night all...

  20. Skeeter- I am glad that you found out what the shells were. We call them June bugs. They like to get caught in your hair. Use to freak me out when I was a kid. They are cicadas, but before they get bigger. They first come out in June, hence June bug! I like to collect the shells to, there awesome looking!

  21. Thanks Skeeter. Your description of tamales sounds good-not spicy though.

    Christinelynn, Hey there young lady! I have been wondering where you have been. Glad to hear from you. Did you know your Aunt Dawn has her own blog now? Check it out. Talking about your quilt this morning. I hope work is going well. I remember you liked these bug shells. Do you ever find them in Maine?

  22. Christinelynn, we use to call them June Bugs also! We would catch them and tie a string on them and watch them fly in circles. Then we would let them go off into the wild...

  23. Mom-I have looked at her blog. Just don't have alot of time right now. Finals are this week, climbing on the weekends, now that I can, sprained my elbow and couldn't for a few weeks. I don't think I have ever found any here. But I loved those things! You know me always the collector of anything I could find outside...right Mimi!!!??

    Skeeter-That is mean!! I could never do that. All the girls freaked when they got in their hair. I never minded, but then again I have always kept it pretty short.

  24. This was a fun post, Tina - I was in Chicago last summer when the 17-year cicadas emerged and the shells on the ground were like mulch!

    I think the insect on the screen is a stag beetle. The first unknowns (right after the velvet ant) look like Click beetles, but these are just guesses.

    Annie at the Transplantable Rose

  25. Right Christy!!!!! But I actually still love you.

  26. Christinelynn, when we did the string bit to the bugs, we were just dumb little kids. I would never do that to them today. I have grown up a bit since then...LOL

    Annie, I will have to look those up to see if they are correct names... Thanks...

  27. Annie, You are correct! The Stag Beetle is the large one with pinchers. The Click Beetle is the one below the Velvet Ant and the one with the big eyes (not really eyes) is also a Click Beetle. A Eyed Click Beetle. There are many different types of Click Beetles. Thanks for the leads...