A cobweb and spider invasion takes place every year in my garden and by geographically living in the northern hemisphere, some like to make there way into my house every year during the autumn months. While this may freak you out, what is more surprising is that research suggests that you are never more than 10 feet away from a spider! Don't worry though because most of the time they are hiding, laying in wait somewhere in a crevice minding their own business waiting to do good...
While they are often portrayed as the stuff of nightmares in books and film and can be a real challenge for those with arachnophobia, my aversion has been tempered by the realization of the good they do. This leads to the question, how are spiders my garden friend? I give spiders roaming and nesting rights within my garden because they are fabulous beneficial insects that capture in their webs and then consume the plant-eating insects and their larvae that would otherwise feed on the flowers, fruit and vegetables in gardens and farmers fields that would otherwise damage plants and destroy food crops. In my garden they are most notable by the webs they cast over my cabbage plants - which I absolutely love them for. That web is not removed till harvest time.
A few additional interesting facts about spiders:
- Unlike us, spiders have blue blood. There is a scientific reason for this. In spiders, the molecule that oxygen is bound to contains copper, which gives their blood the blue colour. In humans, oxygen is bound to a molecule that contains iron, which makes it a red colour.
- The silk in a spiders web is actually five times stronger than a strand of steel the same thickness.
- Spider silk is actually a liquid. When the silk comes into contact with the air, it hardens, which allows them to crawl about them and build such intricate webs.
- Spiders feed mainly on insects, helping to control the insect population inside and outside our homes.
So while spiders are a welcome guest in my garden as are their intricate and deceptively fragile looking webs, I make room for a couple in my home as well during the fall and winter months because its not only the spiders trying to find a winter home.
So why all this talk of spiders and webs as my blog topic this week. This morning I noticed a web with a funnel trap on one of my red cabbages while walking through the garden with my morning coffee that inspired my first project of the week. It's actually a to do item on a list. In my Garden Friends Collection I have a Jeweled Spider suncatcher but don't have photos of all the colours they come in uploaded. The jewels have arrived and today I will be soldering up some in each colour, taking photos and uploading them to the website hopefully today but for sure this week. With the Autumn and Christmas season coming I know that the Jeweled Spiders and Cobwebs will be hot items. Time to get my inventory up!
"The greatest artist and web-designer ever is indeed a spider!" - Munia Khan