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Beginner Landscaping: Lawn spiders!! Help me please...

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highbrassduo
Eugene, OR
(Zone 8a)

April 2, 2007
6:33 PM

Post #3348309

Hi all,

We live in Eugene, OR and when we bought our home last spring, one of the biggest draws was the huge backyard. We have a toddler and another child on the way and could envision hours of playing out in the yard. We've been here almost a year now and it has become very apparent that the lawn is not usable.

Our area is infested with hobo spiders. Deadly to our children. They build their webs on the lawn and in every corner of landscaping we have. They get into our house and crawl around our children's toys. I *think* I have the indoor situation under control but we're at a loss with what to do with the grass area. Not only are there hobo spiders, there are other big (black and brown) spiders in our lawn. To give you an idea of just how many there are, here is an example.

My husband has been mowing the lawn every other day or so for a couple weeks now. I figured that it was probably safe to take my toddler on a trek across the lawn. Every 3 or 4 steps he took (small steps, mind you), a large black or brown spider ran out from under his feet. This continued for the next 20 feet until I freaked out enough and had to scoop him up and run back to the porch. Some were juvenile hobo spiders. Others were whatever the other type is that are all over our house, shrubs, deck, and yard. Those ones are particularly ugly, but I don't think they're as deadly as the hobo spider.

What on earth do I do to get rid of them?? I know it's an area-wide epidemic. I have also researched how to eradicate hobo spiders and it's not recommended because you end up wiping out the other spiders and the hobos come back stronger than ever.

I'm hoping someone here will be able to tell me what to do. We're considering dumping this house and moving to another state. The last thing I need is a hobo spider killing one of my children. The ones that have made it into my house have charged my infant son more than once...

Thanks,

Heather
ecrane3
Dublin, CA
(Zone 9a)

April 2, 2007
7:04 PM

Post #3348411

Here's a couple websites with some info on hobo spiders
http://www.srv.net/~dkv/hobospider/
http://www.nobuggy.com/spiders_in_oregon.html#hobo spider

The first thing to do is confirm that's what you actually have--a lot of spiders look alike to the untrained eye, it's not like these guys are black widows with the unmistakable red hourglass, there are a lot of other spiders that are related to hobos and look similar but aren't dangerous (given where you live, I definitely wouldn't be surprised if you had some, but I bet at least some of the many spiders you're seeing are something else). I think hobos tend to build their webs in protected areas like woodpiles, near the foundation, etc so I think whatever's running around on the lawn is probably a different type of spider, quite possibly one that eats the hobo spiders. There also wouldn't be young hobos running around this time of year, and if the info in the above websites is correct you should be seeing peak hobo activity much later in the year rather than now.

But if they are hobos and they're that big of a problem in your area, I'm sure there are resources in the community that would have recommendations on how to deal with them.
Che_Bolu
Idaho Falls, ID

May 17, 2008
12:41 AM

Post #4962175

I have the same problem. I live in Idaho Falls and yes they are hobos. I have thousands of baby spiders running rampant in my lawn as we speak. I just read a post that suggests using Ortho Home Defense Spray. Spray around your foundation inside and out. Also around shrubs and fences. You will need to spray about once a month until your problem is cleared. I also purchased a liquid insectiside that you connect to your watering hose and spray over the lawn. I'm going to try that this week. I also heard that the spiders like dryer lawns. Maybe if I try all these things it will work. If I don't kill the spiders maybe they will at least migrate to the neighbors.
ecrane3
Dublin, CA
(Zone 9a)

May 17, 2008
12:49 AM

Post #4962198

Before you spray your whole lawn with chemicals, make sure it's actually labeled to control spiders. They're not insects...many insecticides will kill arachnids such as mites and spiders, but some of them won't so make sure to check the label first.

plantfreak78

plantfreak78
Rolesville, NC
(Zone 7b)

May 18, 2008
12:24 AM

Post #4966345

Holy crap! I'm not even afraid of spiders and you guys are freaking me out! I kill at least one black widow in my yard every week because I refuse to use widespread spider killing sprays. But, I wouldn't trade all of my spiders for one of those ordinary looking hobos! And to think, my boss laments leaving Oregon because of how "perfect" it is. Now I have ammo to fight back with :)

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