Hostage situation – send funds

Source: thehousingforum.com

Source: thehousingforum.com

There is a hostage situation going on in my yard.

Tomatoes, basil and other plants are crying out to be rescued.

Honey bees have taken up residence in large numbers in the gate to my garden. That is the gate I use to get inside to pick my crops. It’s the only gate into the garden which is surrounded by a 6 foot fence.

They are in the hollow tubing that surrounds the people door to the fence.

They hung around last year but they nested in the other side of the door. We were able to live in harmony.

This year they moved to the side where the latch is. That means I totally x@#? them off when I use the door.

At first there were only about ten and I was quick so they didn’t get agitated.

This weekend there must have been a bee convention because there were lots. I stopped by during happy hour except that they weren’t happy with me. I needed some fresh basil. They were practicing pick-up lines on each other.

I was quick but not quick enough. I was swarmed and consequently stung. Several times. It hurt. Like hell.

I swell up like a hot air balloon when I get stung. Hot pink balloon but no stripes!

My arms look (and feel) like sacks of cement without a wrinkle on my hand. It looks like I spent a fortune on injectables to “plump” out the wrinkles. The only sign that they are “older” hands are the few freckles (Some people call them liver marks, I call them freckles!).

It ended in an emergency trip to the doctor for a steroid shot and antibiotics. The pain and itching aren’t the worst part. I have to figure out how to get them out of there or there will be no veggies or fresh herbs this year.

The beloved husband recommended spraying. This is my organic garden. I fear some of the nasty spray will settle on my basil and parsley and we’ll die.

I hate killing bees. They do “good” (except for convention weekends when they all let their stingers hang out).

I wonder if I could ransom my garden for a pot of honey. (Perhaps I should try gofundme!)

Readers with a suggestion are welcomed.

68 thoughts on “Hostage situation – send funds

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  3. Wow Kate they sound like real aggressive bees Im happy ours aren’t like this and only sting if you step on one or it gets caught in your clothes on the line. I had one sting me this way carrying the washing in and it hurt for days. I can only imagine your pain after several stings. My husband is allergic but he loves bees and gardening. Good luck removing them, its a shame because they are so good for the garden.

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  4. I had one of those conventions in my mailbox years go. Like you I was not invited either leaving me with a hand that resembled a baseball glove. I’m glad you didn’t spray anything to ruin your hard work at keeping your garden organic…well played! Hope you are feeling better now.

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    • Well, we did have to get rid of the yellow jackets with a spray. The newer sprays are a foam so it doesn’t dissipate in the air like the old sprays (or so they say) and we put it inside the tubular housing where they were nesting. Last night at dusk we closed all the openings in the fencing with duct tape and some electrical goo. I was very pleased to see the honey bees (the real ones) were still working on a big stand of catnip I have so they weren’t hurt by the whole deal. Hope they don’t gravitate to our mailbox!

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  5. Oh I am so sorry you got stung by those nasty yellow jackets. If you haven’t already, try the spray foam stuff. It is so accurate, you will miss your herbs and veggies. In fact the aim is so true, they recommend keeping a can in your bedroom to ward off human intruders. You just aim for the eyes (of the human that is).

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    • That’s what my husband used because I was having a fit spraying anything near my garden. We have to do another spray but it’s been raining here. I will cover my herbs (because I’m neurotic) then we can close up the cavities they like. I am not bursting into your bedroom. I wouldn’t want that stuff in my eyes!

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  6. Kate, sorry about you getting stung! That’s an incredible situation. We don’t have bees but we have some really aggressive wasps and CH handles them in different ways but they are in the workshop. You said they have been identified as yellow jackets now? CH was stung by yellow jackets 15 years ago and the memory is still pretty vivid for both of us. They chased him down! I am glad you are feeling better and I hope you find a solution soon.

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    • I can imagine! They did swarm me. At first I thought I had 4 bites but I must have had more. Both arms swelled like Italian bread. The garden is next to some grass and they tried to swarm my husband when he was mowing. Out came the wasp and yellow jacket killer. We are going to rid of the rest and seal the spaces in the fence tubing. They were there last year but in lesser numbers and we lived in harmony. For sure they weren’t honey bees!

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  7. Oh my! This is a really difficult situation given that we do need the bees. But you shouldn’t have to be attacked by them just to preserve a colony. If you do come up with a professional service set up to protect the bees (and remove them) that doesn’t end up costing you a small fortune, I’d like to know about it. I think that’s the question. If we want to do our best by the bees, agencies need to help us understand what we are supposed to do. In our city the police chief happens to be a backyard bee keeper and I understand that he will come and do bee hive removals so I would hope that you’d also be directed to someone with that special skill. What a strange occurrence, Kate! So sorry!

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    • There are a lot of beekeepers locally who would come out to remove honey bees. Unfortunately, mine were yellow jackets and they have no interest in them. They had been there for a while but became very aggressive in the last week. When they tried to swarm my husband while he was mowing, it was curtains for them.

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  8. I’m so sorry about your bee stings. It must be painful and a little bit scarey. I haven’t had a bee sting in 15 or 20 years, but I have the feeling it would be worse now since I’ve become more allergic than I used to be. The mosquito bites I got on the 4th of July itched for about five days. I used to get over them within a few hours. A few days ago the lavender I was cutting was well populated with bees. Fortunately they didn’t attack. I suppose some bees are more aggressive than others.

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    • Usually bees don’t bother you if you don’t swat at them. I don’t. This is only the second time I’ve been stung and both times I blew up and got incredible itching. Both times required trips to the emergency center (not the ER) for steroid shots and antibiotics. The Benadryl for itching put me to sleep so I had a nice nap every 6 hours!

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  9. Oh, so sorry you were stung! If the bee keeper doesn’t work out maybe your state Dept. of Natural Resources (that’s what it’s called here in Minnesota) could offer guidance. Or your local university extension service? Love the title of this post – so funny!

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  10. Oh no, Kate! That is terrible. A friend’s husband was just in the hospital with the same thing. Maybe there is an epidemic. Are they Africanized bees? We had a swarm INSIDE OUR LIVING ROOM a few years ago. We came home and saw them there in a mass on the wall and I almost died thinking of how they could have killed my cats.

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    • As the doctor was treating me he said that there are statistics on the number of people who die every year from bee stings! Your cats would have been smart to stay out of their way. As it turns out, they are yellow jackets, not honey bees.

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  11. Ouch, Kate! I remember when I was a teenager and I sat on a bee’s nest (it was hidden under some rocks). I got stuck a lot and it hurt like hell! But, no allergic reaction. Sounds like your stings were a bit worse. Hope you solve the problem, looks like just about everyone suggested calling a local bee keeper. Good info to have if I ever need it. Hope the swelling’s gone down.

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  12. Oh, I’m so sorry. I mowed lawns at an apartment and golf course complex during my college summers. I lived in fear of bees and wasps and got stung several times. The boss was unsympathetic. I learned to just try to stay away from known areas, but you don’t seem to have that option. I hope this beekeeper idea might work for you.

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    • The final answer was yellow jackets so there was no compelling reason to save them although if they wouldn’t have been so aggressive I would have let them be. I can’t imagine getting repeatedly stung. I must have an allergic reaction to them.

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  13. OUCH! I would definitely find a beekeeper to help you relocate the bees to a better spot for you and them.

    Either that, or invest in a beekeeper suit to wear when you need to harvest your crops.

    Hope you feel all better soon.

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  14. I am allergic to bee stings about 50% of the time so this is scary for me. Some years ago a bee colony took up residence under my roof with an entryway from my deck. I live in a condo and the other owners were not happy… yes, it was all my fault that I am so sweet the bees wanted to live with me. I didn’t want to use chemicals so we ended up having them smoked out. This had to be 10 years ago and the bees, with a very long ancestral memory, still come back to the same point of entry and buzz around on my deck. But they haven’t taken up residence again. Good luck and sayonara to the bees.

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    • I have had two instances of getting stung (and they were yellow jackets rather than honey bees) and both times I had a bad reaction. Not life threatening but I blew up and had systemic itching. I am careful around bees and I never swat. Normally I’m not stung but I’m sure it was opening the gate latch that agitated them. We are sealing off all openings in the tubing.

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  15. OH NO! I feel just awful for you. If there anything I can do to help, (besides calling Ehrlich) just let me know. I think the other suggestion about calling for a beekeeper is your best option.

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    • The final answer was aggressive yellow jackets. No beekeeper was interested in those so out they went. I don’t like to eliminate anything because they all have a purpose but they need to let me in my garden if they want to live!

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  16. Yes, I think there are local bee keepers who can help!

    How did you even get out this post? Did you type with your nose? You are so dedicated!

    Also, bee stings are used medicinally for some kinds of arthritis (I think? I saw it in passing on a show). So when you get back to gardening/ typing, I want to know if any aches/ pains are gone!

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  17. Call a local beekeeper and ask to have them moved. I think this is possible. A beekeeper can smoke them to make them drowsy and then move them.

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  18. Yikes. Another reason I don’t go into nature – snorts! Those things would have a field day with this little oinker body. Be careful my friend. No recommendations except wearing head to toe combat covering. Now *that* I would like to see too. Rolls with piggy laughter. XOXO – Bacon

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