Sunday, 6 February 2011

Unguarded gardening moment

After weeks of trying to get into the garden to do some much need tidying up, pruning and weeding, we finally had a break in the weather this afternoon.  This morning it was raining rather heavily, so it was nice to see the sun periodically this afternoon.  With all the wet and humid weather we've been experiencing, everything has grown incredibly fast, with plants beginning to take over at the back of the house.
We had noticed some time ago that European wasps had made a nest in the retaining wall, one of the areas that needed pruning. I very carefully (with gloves on), pruned around the area of their nest taking care not agitate them too much.  Unfortunately one nasty little wasp decided to get inside my glove and sting me.  Oh dear, hot needle pain between my knuckles. 

I had read somewhere that you can relieve the pain of a bee or wasp sting by cutting an onion in half and putting it on the affected site.  It did take away some of the sharpness of the sting but now the pain has intensified and my hand is swollen around the site of the sting, ouchies!!!!

This is the culprit.
Photo from CSIRO

According to an article on the CSIRO
website, this is what you should do for a European wasp sting.

"For multiple stings or a sting in the throat, seek urgent medical aid. Otherwise apply an ice pack or anaesthetic spray.
Or follow this advice from 400 years ago: 'If any venomous beast, by his sting or biting have caused your flesh to rise…put upon the stung place the dung of a cow or ox very hot'."

 I'm rather amused by the dung remedy, fortunately I have none of that to hand.  We have since poisoned the nest site and as much as I hate to use poison, these wasps are nasty.  Furthermore, since they are an introduced species, I don't have any qualms about killing them.

Wishing everyone a lovely week.

Anne  xx


  1. Ouchie! I was stung on the eye lid last year and it hurt like hell! No remedies here I'm afraid - but I hope it feels better soon xx

  2. Hi Anne, thank you so much for your visit and lovely comment! I've just visited you back and honestly your blog is very beautiful! I'm so glad to meet you! I also followed you back so we can keep in touch!
    Have a lovely Sunday!
    LS, x

  3. Hey Anne, hope all is well now. Sounded like a very painful encounter.
    They are such a nuisance, they usually appear here around March, but with all the rain I wonder if we will see many. I have been told they make nests in creek banks and this year they would've been flooded.
    Hope the rain you received didn't cause any problems. We had 136mls over the weekend. Today was lovely, no humidity and cool enough to have a couple of blankets overnight.
    Love your crocheted bunting, gorgeous colours.

    Have a great week,

    Claire :}

  4. Our british ones are bad, but they are not as agressive as the european ones, which are bigger. We had a nest of europeans in our roof last year. Like you, I hate destroying anything, but the nest's location was making coexistence impossible. Only upside of a nest of wasps is that they are good at eating the caterpillars and other grubs that like my cabbages.

    I've not heard of the onion or dung treatment, but we always say vinegar for wasps and bicarbonate of soda for bees. Hope you don't have the problem again and your hand is better soon.

  5. Oh Anne, hope the pain is starting to settle now...You poor thing!

    Best thing I think, destroying the nest! as I hear they can also attack on mass, and that can be very, very serious!

  6. Just catching up Anne. Looks like you've been busy. Lovely photos of the Western Australian property. It certainly looks dry and now all those awful fires near Perth. Hope your family is not affected though from the photos there's not too much to burn there.


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