new videos
hot off the press!  
    more about rocket
mass heaters here.

more videos from
the PDC here.
  • Post Reply Bookmark Topic Watch Topic
  • New Topic

Wasps vs. Carpenter Bees  RSS feed

 
Ferne Reid
Posts: 122
Location: SW Tennessee Zone 7a average rainfall 52"
1
  • Mark post as helpful
  • send pies
  • Quote
  • Report post to moderator
For the past 2 years, we've had a crazy population of red wasps that hung out at the entrance to our barn. They are aggressive little suckers that would dive bomb us and sting just for walking through the doorway. I will confess to using a few non-permie-friendly approaches to getting rid of them, none of which worked very well.

This year ... the carpenter bees have moved in, and all of a sudden we don't have a lot of wasps. Mind you, of the two, I'd rather have the carpenter bees. They don't bother people at all, and I enjoy having cute, fat little bees buzzing around.

However, I like my barn.

Do I trap the bees and risk the wasps coming back? Do y'all know of any beneficials I could buy and release that would discourage red wasps but not have my barn for breakfast, lunch, and dinner? Any other ideas?
 
Casie Becker
gardener
Posts: 1474
Location: Just northwest of Austin, TX
116
forest garden urban
  • Likes 2
  • Mark post as helpful
  • send pies
  • Quote
  • Report post to moderator
It sound odd, but if you paint the undersides of your eaves (and maybe the roof in a barn) sky blue, then the wasps don't build nests there. That won't stop them from building nests on vertical surfaces, but they do less of that in my experience. We have a huge wasp population, sometimes making the shed that we didn't paint unusable, but we never have wasp nests on our house.
 
Bryant RedHawk
garden master
Posts: 2738
Location: Vilonia, Arkansas - Zone 7B/8A stoney, sandy loam soil pH 6.5
224
chicken dog forest garden hugelkultur hunting toxin-ectomy
  • Mark post as helpful
  • send pies
  • Quote
  • Report post to moderator
I will second Casie's tip and if you want to save your barn you need to paint it too. Not only will wasps not build on paint but carpenter bees won't be happy to drill their nests through that paint either.

Redhawk
 
Casie Becker
gardener
Posts: 1474
Location: Just northwest of Austin, TX
116
forest garden urban
  • Likes 1
  • Mark post as helpful
  • send pies
  • Quote
  • Report post to moderator
In the case of the wasps, I think it's the color that is important. Occasionally we get tiny nests on yellow and red surfaces. I think the idea of the blue is that they have a hard time determining if that's a solid surface or sky.
 
Bryant RedHawk
garden master
Posts: 2738
Location: Vilonia, Arkansas - Zone 7B/8A stoney, sandy loam soil pH 6.5
224
chicken dog forest garden hugelkultur hunting toxin-ectomy
  • Likes 1
  • Mark post as helpful
  • send pies
  • Quote
  • Report post to moderator
I agree Casie, Both are color sensitive insects, Many folks here say to use white paint for carpenter bees and sky blue for wasps.

I have found that the sky blue works well for both and white not so much for either and you certainly don't want to use reds, yellows, deep blues or anything else that you can find in flower colors.
I have an orange T that I love but I can't wear it when working outdoors because every insect with a stinger comes wanting to pollinate me.
I have witnessed carpenter bees home in on a shirt color, worn by someone who disturbed them, they chased the poor fellow for three blocks and they attacked the shirt after he took it off and threw it on the ground.
He had suffered about 10 stings in the time period he was fleeing those bees.

I have to be very cautious around any of them since I am anaphylactic to bee and wasp stings.
I have exactly 1 hour to get to an Epinephrine pen, which I usually have on me or very near by.

Redhawk
 
A feeble attempt to tell you about our stuff that makes us money
Video of all the permaculture design course and appropriate technology course (about 177 hours)
https://permies.com/wiki/65386/paul-wheaton/digital-market/Video-PDC-ATC-hours-HD
  • Post Reply Bookmark Topic Watch Topic
  • New Topic
Boost this thread!