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Herbs: lavender-scorpion relationship

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basket_case
Backus, MN

November 22, 2006
7:02 PM

Post #2937171

In a movie I saw shallow boxes of lavender kept in window ledges. When these boxes were removed in the evening the next morning scorpions appears in the room...since it happened more than once (and I realize this IS a movie) I wondered if anyone knew what the relationship might me. does lavender repel or attract scorpions? Three of us were puzzled and all are trying to find any info. Many thanks to anyone who can shed a light.
critterologist
Frederick, MD
(Zone 6b)

November 22, 2006
8:22 PM

Post #2937346

This sounds like a purely cinematic phenomenon to me... but maybe somebody who lives in southwestern "scorpion country" will have an answer...
kmom246
Murfreesboro, TN
(Zone 7a)

November 24, 2006
8:07 PM

Post #2941236

Scorpions like to hide under damp things during the day. They can really flatten down their already flat bodies and wedge themselves under and between things. Since they are nocturnal, they would wander into the house at night after coming out of hiding. I don't think it would have had anything to do with the lavender - more to do with a handy, narrow spot to hide in during the day.

One way we "catch" scorpions is to put our bags of mulch or dirt down on the ground and then lift them up during the day - do the "scorpion stomp" dance on any that we find (making sure we're wearing boots). You can see a life sized version of one of the "dirt finds" on my website http://kmom246.icfsc.com/wildlife.htm So far, the only ones we've found in the house appear to have hitch hiked inbetween the folds of boxes from the storage. We now unpack everything on the back cement porch before it comes into the house.

By the way, most of them are not deadly.
garden_mermaid
San Francisco Bay Ar, CA
(Zone 9b)

November 24, 2006
8:13 PM

Post #2941245

kmom, what does your pet tarantula think about the local scorpions?
basket_case
Backus, MN

November 25, 2006
1:08 AM

Post #2941866

Thanks, KMom! We just thought there might be a lavender-scorpion connection. Deadly or not, I am just as wary of your scorpions as you might be about a Minnesota Blizzard! (Both are harmless if you aren't stupid about them!!)
podster
Deep East Texas, TX
(Zone 8a)

November 25, 2006
1:34 AM

Post #2941927

There are only few lavenders that like our heat and humidity. On the other hand, the scorps don't seem to mind. The only other deterrent we use besides a foot is 10% 7 Dust. This little bugger drowned. http://davesgarden.com/journal/edit/viewentry.php?rid=111084 I saw him in this tub but figured he could get out on his own... ; ) pod

This message was edited Nov 24, 2006 8:35 PM
basket_case
Backus, MN

November 26, 2006
6:09 PM

Post #2945420

Gee, he looks so little and harmless...since I have never really seen one, I of course, imagine them to be large... you know, 6-8 inches long. Do they ever grow that big?
podster
Deep East Texas, TX
(Zone 8a)

November 26, 2006
11:44 PM

Post #2946207

I think that get that big and bigger in other countries. The ones we find here are maybe 2 inches. Some places have smaller and more painful ones than we do. I haven't been bit but DH has. Said it was like a wasp sting. I imagine my day will come...
brigidlily
Lumberton, TX
(Zone 8b)

November 27, 2006
6:56 PM

Post #2948154

I got stung by one out on the Navajo reservation. All I knew about them at the time was what I learned from the movies, so of course I knew it was a matter of time before I was dead. And it is about like a wasp sting. I think it's the big black ones that aren't even on this continent that can be deadly.

And by the way, they live everywhere. Every single climate except antarctica. You just don't see them without a black light. And of course they're more common in desert areas. I learned a lot about scorpions after my little episode.
summerkid
Rose Lodge, OR
(Zone 8b)

November 28, 2006
2:41 AM

Post #2949485

Just curious: If they aren't that dangerous, why do you go out of your way to kill them?
podster
Deep East Texas, TX
(Zone 8a)

November 28, 2006
3:04 AM

Post #2949519

Well, I haven't really figured out what they are good for... I can overlook wasps, yellow jackets, bees, hornets, etc. I know the Lord put everything on this earth for a reason but... They crawl into clothing, bedding, in the tub. They hide in dark places and just wait to pop you. Why they want to nail me ~ I don't know, they can't eat me!
garden_mermaid
San Francisco Bay Ar, CA
(Zone 9b)

November 28, 2006
4:57 AM

Post #2949702

Scorpions eat insects and small rodents. Apparently they live in colonies, which is probably why we encounter them in groups. They are as much a pest control force as spiders and are beneficial to their native environment. It's interesting that they fluoresce under a black light.

http://ag.arizona.edu/pubs/insects/az1223/


Amazing Scorpion Facts


• Thousands of scorpions may reside in one garden wall.

• Only one very toxic species is found in the United States.

• Scorpion fossils with gills indicate that the animals once lived in the ocean.

• Scorpions are fluorescent at night—a trait that enables scientists to locate them easily with a black light. The function of this trait, if any, is unknown.

• A protein component found in scorpion venom is useful for fighting cancer in certain human cells. The component seems to be specific for particular nerve cells. If those cells go cancerous, the protein component can be coupled with cytotoxic agents, and the synthesized molecule can be used as a specific targeting tool to kill the cancerous cells.

• A hectare (2.5 acres) of desert may contain about a 110 pounds (50 kilograms) of scorpions.

• Scorpions have some of nature's most precise biological clocks, perhaps because they spend so much time in underground burrows.

• Scorpions are incredibly resistant to radiation and have survived near ground zero at nuclear test sites.

• Scorpions often climb into a bush with their kill, where it may take them a day and a half to eat.

• The scorpion diet often includes other scorpions.

podster
Deep East Texas, TX
(Zone 8a)

November 28, 2006
12:06 PM

Post #2949978

You know, I read up on these buggers when exposed to them. They are closely related to the harvest man ~ daddy long leg spider. Like a spider, they will also eat bugs. So will all the spiders, my cats, snakes, lizards, etc. : )) I have come to terms with the scorpions. They can live if they stay OUT of my house! Sorry...
brigidlily
Lumberton, TX
(Zone 8b)

November 28, 2006
4:40 PM

Post #2950709

I agree entirely, pod! I'm all for spiders and things and keeping the balance as much as possible. But outside, not in, especially black widows. I have little animals and occasional grandchildren around.

And I'm afraid I'm willing to kill a black widow even outside. Too scary. If it looks like a BW or a brown recluse, sorry, but it's gone.

Did you know the daddy longlegs has intensely toxic venom? But its mouth is too small to bite anything bigger than it is, so it won't hurt people.

Someday I'm going to sit down and figure out all the critters I've been bitten/stung by. It will be a long list.
basket_case
Backus, MN

November 28, 2006
5:13 PM

Post #2950790

People here in northern Minnesota used to complain about the cold winters and add 'but at least we don't have poisonous spiders and snakes'. NOW you tell me we do have scorpions? Oh My! But I have to agree with the opinion of 'if it stays outside, it can live'! Guess I have to learn to shake my shoes and gloves before I put them on each time - just in case! Thanks for all the info everyone has added.
brigidlily
Lumberton, TX
(Zone 8b)

November 28, 2006
6:14 PM

Post #2950915

I find myself looking into my sloggers and squishing each finger of the gloves before I put them on! I knit and last thing I want to do is lose (or decommission) a finger.
podster
Deep East Texas, TX
(Zone 8a)

November 29, 2006
2:11 AM

Post #2952105

I grew up in Mn. Never heard of scorpions up there... But poisonous snakes, you bet! The Minnesota river bottom had a high concentration of rattlesnakes. Never saw one tho.

Brigidlily We recently had a friend bit on the thumb by what they think was a brown recluse. I have NEVER seen anything soooo ugly. But they say the incidence of BR bites is down since the advent of indoor plumbing. Thank heaven!

When scorpions eat bugs and like dark places I wondered why they come in my well light, bug free home... Things that make you go hmmmmm... pod
Ladyborg
Magnolia, TX
(Zone 8b)

December 2, 2006
4:39 PM

Post #2961910

We must have built our house on a scorpion's nest because they are all over and always getting in the house (and none of our neighbors have them). They must come in the walls and to up to the attic and fall through recessed lights or air vents. This city girl was might shocked the first time she saw one...and ready to sell the country house and move to an apartment in the city :o Now I'm used to them and have been stung 3 times...once in my car with a stowaway in my totebag!!!! They're most active in the house in the hottest part of our hot and humid summers here, even THEY want to get away from our heat! So we have the pest guy come spray house (in and out) as well as attic in the summer.

All our little dogs have been bitten by them without adverse effects (thankfully)!
podster
Deep East Texas, TX
(Zone 8a)

December 3, 2006
12:50 AM

Post #2963140

Funny how we manage to adapt to adversity. The ones we find here are usually in the fall. I just assumed they were looking to overwinter. We never saw them before we built and I wondered if we brought them in with bldg materials.
raydio
Bessemer City, NC
(Zone 7b)

December 3, 2006
3:29 AM

Post #2963562

Re: Daddy longlegs' venom:

http://spiders.ucr.edu/daddylonglegs.html

Sorry if anyone get disillusioned.

Robert.

garden_mermaid
San Francisco Bay Ar, CA
(Zone 9b)

December 4, 2006
6:39 AM

Post #2966718

Yep, I agree with the "keeping them outside" part. For all the good that spiders do, I can't knowingly live in close proximity to them in an indoor environment. If I encounter one inside the house, I politely let them know the "rules" (no spiders IN the house) and let them know that I will leave the room for ten minutes to allow them space to exit gracefully. I let them know that if they are not gone by the time I return, I'm getting the vaccum cleaner with the long pipe extension. Fortunately, most spiders have enough common sense not to challenge me...or my cats!
brigidlily
Lumberton, TX
(Zone 8b)

December 5, 2006
8:04 PM

Post #2971463

pod, my sweetie was bitten by a BR about ten years ago, and the bite still has not healed! They can be horrible.

raydio, thanks for the information! I don't mind getting disillusioned by truth.

garden_mermaid, I'm with you. If they pay no heed to my argument (yes, you can hurt me, but I can kill you) then I get out the shoe or swatter or whatever. And I always apologize and send them to God. I had a problem for a while with black widows, but none since we had our little meeting.
raydio
Bessemer City, NC
(Zone 7b)

December 5, 2006
8:13 PM

Post #2971486

brigid~

I always say if you don't have any illusions, you can't be disillusioned. Truth and knowledge are tops with me and if there were nasty rumors about me, I'd rather the truth be tod. LOL.

I've heard people here locally say that thing about being *so* poisonous about what is called locally a "Grand-daddy spider" or "Daddy Longlegs" but is what (most?) other people refer to as a "Harvestman":

http://www.fcps.k12.va.us/StratfordLandingES/Ecology/mpages/harvestman.htm

Robert.
summerkid
Rose Lodge, OR
(Zone 8b)

December 5, 2006
8:30 PM

Post #2971543

I only kill 3 things: fleas, ticks & mosquitoes.

My doors are wide open all summer & I'm very laissez-faire about most creatures and have little spiders all over the house unless my boyfriend decides to clear them out. I figure they cut down on the mosquitoes, which are my BANE (I react worse to some mosquito bites than I do to stings from the honeybees I keep in the garden). Another pest the spiders keep out is the b'friend's mother.

But I have a nifty pair of plastic "scissors" with a two-piece compartment instead of blades that works great for catching wasps & stuff to release outside. My favorite tool, however, is a little electric Shark hand vacuum, which makes short work of the ladybug influx each fall, and then I can empty the filter & a host of dazed ladybugs back outside. Spiders seem to survive this treatment too. The funniest thing is when I see some confused spider clinging for dear life to my little vacuumer & scrubber robots (the Roomba & Scoober, my little lifesavers) ...
garden_mermaid
San Francisco Bay Ar, CA
(Zone 9b)

December 5, 2006
8:33 PM

Post #2971560

"daddy long-legs" appears to be used for a wide variety of spiders. It's probably been applied to any spider with very long legs. The ones we get are very frail and shy (thankfully!)

http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Pholcidae
brigidlily
Lumberton, TX
(Zone 8b)

December 6, 2006
3:45 PM

Post #2973932

summerkid, do you really like the roomba? I've thought about getting one. I have tile floors, but three cats (to which my sweetie, my daughter, and my son's girlfriend are very allergic). They're just SO expensive. But are they worth it? And will they work on tile floors?
summerkid
Rose Lodge, OR
(Zone 8b)

December 6, 2006
7:13 PM

Post #2974522

I LOVE the roomba. It's amazingly effective. It didn't seem that expensive to me since, with 6 cats & a dog, messy hobbies & a really slobbish approach to cleaning, I need all the help I can get. After replacing two mediocre canister vacuums in one year, I invested in a Miele vacuum just for the furniture & have never regretted it.

The Roomba does great on my linoleum, Pergo & both carpets, which are very low nap. I don't think tile would pose a problem unless the crevices are really deep. One of the cool features is that it just scoots under all the furniture, like my bed. I have the pet version, which basically means it came with a little plastic tube for pulling hair off the rotating brush. What really cracks me up is that "Thor" docks himself on the power station when he's done & beeps a happy little song.

But what really impresses me is the Scooba. I hate mopping floors because it feels like I'm just pushing dirty water around, but the Scooba picks up crumbs, lays down a Clorox solution, scrubs, then scoops it up as it goes. Even when the kitchen floor looks reasonably clean, that tank will be full of impressively dirty water after 20 minutes.

I sound like a commercial! But I really do feel that, not only are these true labor-saving devices, they improve upon my own efforts. By the way, http://www.irobot.com offers a 30-day trial, I think, and you can get the older reconditioned models for less ...

This message was edited Dec 6, 2006 2:19 PM
garden_mermaid
San Francisco Bay Ar, CA
(Zone 9b)

December 6, 2006
10:08 PM

Post #2975015

Agree with you on the Miele vacuum. My last two vaccum cleaners expired after two years and cost more to return for repair than to replace. I finally broke down and bought the Miele with the quilted bags and the HEPA filter option. It REALLY picks up cat fur extremely well. It filters so well when cleaning that there is no "just vaccumed" musty smell. And I love the fact that it is fairly quiet compated to prior vaccums. My cats dont' run and hide when I use it.

If I had to suck up a spider with this, there's no way it's coming back out!
brigidlily
Lumberton, TX
(Zone 8b)

December 8, 2006
4:41 PM

Post #2981910

Thanks! This is yet another bullet I might just bite.
kmom246
Murfreesboro, TN
(Zone 7a)

December 24, 2006
7:12 AM

Post #3022285

We've taken to relocating the scorpions out of the human habitated areas. I haven't tried feeding one to my tarantula - she's fast, but those scorpions are pretty quick, too, and I wouldn't want my baby to hurt. She and I have cohabitated over 5 years and 3 different households.

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