Tuesday, September 20, 2011

Love bugs and hateful bugs

Floridians are all familiar with the bugs that get plastered on the grills and windshields of our cars every May and September. Well, it’s September and they’re b-a-a-ack. Who knew they like flowers? If anyone knows whether or not they do damage, I’d like to know… but then again maybe not. They're certainly ugly buggers. For the uninitiated they fly around in connected pairs, hence their name, often in swarms on the highways.

‘Pink Perpetue’, a Large Flowered ClimberIMG_0107 (640x557)

The next four photos are all ‘Reve d’Or’, a Noisette climber and a very tasty rose apparentlyIMG_0001 (640x567)
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‘White Maman Cochet’
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The next three are ‘Climbing Maman Cochet’
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Lovebugs are nuisances and can definitely damage your car’s paint job, but the next bug is the hateful one. AKA Stink Bug. AKA Large Footed Leaf Bug. Whatever. They are destructive to roses and other plants.
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I’ve known these bugs were in the garden all summer, but I had only seen one and now the second.
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Usually they're a darker brown color. Since I wasn’t wearing my garden gloves, I simply flicked him rather than put him to death. They stink when disturbed or smushed, and the smell does not wash right off. Sadly he still lives to destroy. After I flicked him, I wiped off the bud just in case it was a she laying eggs. Below is some of their handiwork on two roses that I found today.IMG_0053 (Custom)
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I don’t know if the next damage is the work of a bug. I don’t know why one-third of ‘Souv de Francois Gaulain’ looks like it’s dying. I’ve never seen this happen except on canes that were broken. This cane is in tact and still green even though the leaves are brown and crispy. Tomorrow I’ll cut it off and hope it’s not spreading – whatever it is. Dang, I hope I didn’t get a drop of Round-Up on a leaf.
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As I walked through the garden this evening I was sure I would do a post entitled “Derelict garden”. It would have been pretty ugly. Thankfully for all of my faithful readers there were love bugs. Alas, enough ugliness! I’ll leave you with some beauty from today's garden.
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Row 1:  ‘Duchesse d’Auerstadt and canna lily
Row 2:  Dragon Wing Begonia
Row 3:  ‘Madame Lombard’ and ‘Quietness’
Row 4:  Coneflower and ‘Le Vesuve’
Row 5:  ‘White Maman Cochet’ and ‘Gruss an Aachen’
Row 6:  ‘Climbing Maman Cochet’ and ‘White Maman Cochet’
Row 7:  ‘Duquesa’


  1. Been working on a new blog, haven't been around to visit everyone yet. Love bugs were not bad this past spring. They are here now though.

  2. Well the blooms are lovely but the bugs. Yuck.
    Cher Sunray Gardens

  3. Wonderful blooms in spite of 'bugs' good and bad. I hope your half brown rose bush will be just fine.

    Looking at your photos makes me want to get outside to work in my overgrown main garden, but I don't know if the heat and humdity will allow me to. We'll see, it just might be an indoor day.


  4. Sherry I agree, the Lovebugs have seemed to be extra bad this year. Just from here to Ocala on Sunday, the car was covered. Just a funny, one of our customers calls them "fornicating bugs"! By the way I think I need to make a field trip, that Duchesse d'Auerstadt is beautiful. Also could use a few more cuttings of different roses. We can come up with a trade, eggs, roses, beef? :)

  5. Sherry, is there something that is working against the Stink Bugs ? This year, they damaged my tomatoes . I hate them ...
    Lovely roses ! ' Le Vesuve ' it's on my wish list.

  6. Wow - I've never seen so many love bugs! We have there here, but not in those numbers! Stink bugs I hate because I don't know how to get rid of them! If only the didn't stink when you squashed them! But I had no idea they would do that to a rose. This is war! You have a lot of pretty in your garden.

  7. Stink bugs are such a problem in the mid-Atlantic because they invade our houses in winter. They are non-native and recently arrived to this country. I believe the native stink bug is green and not harmful.

  8. Fantastic pictures....

    Yikes... that stink bug looks scary and sounds scary. It's nothing like our stink bugs, which just... stink. They don't really harm anything (they come indoors trying to find a warm place to hunker down for the winter.) Hope yours don't cause you too much trouble.

  9. Hateful bugs! I encourage other critters, hoping they'll eat more bugs. A huge gopher tortoise came waddling up the driveway this week and I saw a garter snake. Gnats are still with us, too.