Pesky Gnats

Tulips & The Stupid Gnats

Me and my “step” daughter (The little girl I nanny for) planted 8 tulips in March. Unfortunately I didnt read all of the instructions for planting and didnt plant them deep enough but we did have some survivors! So we replanted the three survivors in May. Here it is mid June & one of the tulips has sprouted, not bloomed, but close to it! Our plant is about 7-8 in tall! The other two bulbs are at a measly 1/2 in, and I was so confused why!! This morning, I was drinking my coffee outside looking at the plants and I start seeing all these tiny bugs with wings and thought, oh hell no.

I googled it of course, because all mighty google knows it all I guess.

Gnats. Pesky, plant root eating gnats. That means, the reason our plants weren’t growing was because the larvae, not the adult gnats but their kin, was friggin eating the roots of the plants! Grrr…

I am so far from having a green thumb its ridiculous. The only thing I’ve EVA grown successfully have been my annual strawberry patch as a kid. Oh I miss SV.

Anyways, I came inside and told her: Look, we have a serious problem with the plants. We have stupid bugs eating our plants! We need to do something!: She was all on board to kill those pesky little things! (Her fav cartoon is Spiderman and she loves making sure that any bad guy gets his butt kicked! I love it!)

So I went online and found a couple home remedies that I had the ingredients for and we went on a BUG TRAP MAKING SPREE! It was pretty fun actually. And we did more than one just to make sure they would be gone!  Here’s what we did.

1) The first thing we did was: Made a mixture of 2 cups water, 2 Tb apple cider vinegar and 1 Tb sugar. We put a few tablespoons into an old medicine measuring cup, and the rest in a jar. Then we covered them both with plastic wrap & secured with rubber bands. Then we poked small holes with a toothpick and set the jar next to the planter and the medicine cup actually inside the planter and made it level with dirt.

This trap draws the gnats attention to it because for some reason they love the smell of vinegar, apples, and sugar; the plastic wrap with holes allow them to get in but not out, and every 4 days you will replace with a new solution to catch more.

http://www.wikihow.com/Use-Home-Remedies-to-Get-Rid-of-Gnats

2) The next thing we did was: Made sticky gnat trap. We got two toothpicks and taped them together. Taped on yellow construction paper that was the size of an index card. Rubbed petroleum jelly all over it, and stuck into our planter like a plant information card. We made three of these and stuck them in alongside the border.

With this trap, it draws the gnats attention making them think its a flower, with its bright color, and when they go to crawl/land on it, they get stuck in the jelly

http://blog.pennlive.com/gardening/2014/01/how_to_get_rid_of_those_gnats.html

3) Next: Dryer sheets under the planter. We stuck dryer sheets underneath the planter box allowing them to stick out along the sides, kind of like a tablecloth.

This doesnt actually kills any of the bugs, but instead is like a repellant, to keep them from laying eggs. A gnat only lives about a week, but can lay up to 200 eggs! Which then turn into larvae and there is now 200 more gnats from that one stupid pesky bug.

http://pestcontrol.about.com/od/diygnatcontrol/a/Do-Dryer-Sheets-Repel-Pests.htm

4) The last thing we did was: Made a Bug Zap Spray! This was really fun because it took a short amount of time, but she was able to go out there and spray any little bug she saw! She really liked this one. We filled an old, clean spray bottle with 2 cups of water, 2 Tb vanilla extract, and a few drops of dish soap. And bata-bing bata-boom, went out there and wrangled these suckers.

Why this works is because the soap will kill them, the vanilla extract prevents them from returning, and the water is to dilute them so it wont burn the actual plants. (Like if the bug was crawling on the plants and we sprayed them, it would kill the bug and not the petal/plant)

http://www.brighthub.com/environment/green-living/articles/86083.aspx

Concluding, I will make an update on Friday and tell you how the bugs are, and if we caught any with our traps. This was fun and I hope they will be all gone soon!

Thanks for checking this out and if you have any home remedies for gnats or flying pests, leave a comment! If you’ve tried any of these too, tell me your experience!

Happy Tuesday!!

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No Bake Energy Balls

This recipe is adapted from ‘Gimme Some Oven’ and I tweaked it a little for my preference. I like love these! Guilt free too. Pretty easy to make. It was made in a Tupperware bowl and transferred to a paper plate. One dish recipe, I’m all in!

Now these are kind of earthy, granola bar-ish so take that to mind when making these. My 2 year old liked them, but the adults love em.

1 Cup Rolled Oats

1/2 Cup Wheat Germ

3/4 Cup Peanut Butter

1/2 Cup Maple Syrup

1 Cap Vanilla Extract

1/2 Cup Shredded Coconut

1/3 Cup Sunflower Seeds

1/2 Cup Raisins

1/3 Cup Chopped Peanuts

1 Cup Honey Bunches of Oats Cereal (this gave it a nice crunch)

Mix all ingredients until thoroughly blended. Wet hands as needed and roll into balls. This made me 30 small energy balls. Refrigerate about 30 minutes & keep them cold. (Keeping them in the fridge is my preference, but I’m sure you can keep them at room temp.) The recipe I adapted this from said to add chocolate chips, but I wasn’t in the mood for chocolate and it came out great!

Cleansing Infused Water

On this rainy day, it is also the start to my health cleanse. My son is almost 2 and I still have not shook the baby weight *sigh*. I’m actually trying to get down *at least* to the weight after I had him. Yes, you read that right. So, gotta get into shape! It seems that every single stinkin’ time I start a diet/exercise regimen I get sick! Three weeks ago I started working out, watching more of what I ate, etc. And…..bronchitis. Don’t freak though, its basically a yearly thing in this dry desert for me, but still! I cant workout when I can barely breathe and I get the pity party goin’ on and I just indulge. So I’m all better and there’s nothing stopping me, so take two baby!

Now, this water is something that is oh-so, so-good. When I first read about it I was like who the hell drinks that?! But its an infused water than actually cleanses the natural body system free of toxins, stored fats, and re-hydrates, all without sugar, calories, or $1/bottle. I seriously made 2 liters of this stuff for $1.25

Count me in & bottoms up!

Cleansing Infused Water

 2 small lemons sliced thinly and in half

1 cucumber slightly peeled, and sliced

1 crushed mint sieve

Water

Now, I made my own mint sieve, and it wasn’t hard at all. I got a tea bag, opened it up, discarded the contents, shook my crushed mint jar in it until it was about the same amount as the tea that was in there. sealed it up with tape, and viola. A crushed mint sieve.

Add all ingredients to a pitcher, fill with desired amount of water, and refrigerate overnight.

The next morning, give it a whirl, pour, and feel it working.

I was happily surprised when it was pretty tasty. Id love for you guys to try it and let me know what you think!

Note-this does not help with digestive matters, but does make you pee out all your toxins. Maker beware.

LOW FAT Santa Fe Black Beans and Corn Recipe

I was browsing through low fat, low cal recipes, and as a vegetarian you’d think that would be easy. Well 7 years later, I had to switch stuff up! I was getting tired of the same things I always have and wanted new, yummy food, that was also guilt free. I found this recipe and tweaked it a little, I whip this up in about 30 min, and it is friggtiy-freakin-fabu.  Quick, easy, delicious. This is a staple.

Santa Fe Black Beans and Corn Recipe

2 Cans low sodium black beans, drained, rinsed thoroughly

1 (12) oz bag frozen corn

1 Can Stewed tomatoes with mexican seasoning, with juice

3 Jalepenos, rinsed, deseeded, rinsed again, diced

1 medium white or yellow onion, chopped roughly

Juice of 1 Lime

Cilantro

Oil

Garlic Powder, Ground Cumin, Salt, Pepper

Warning! This is quite spicy.

Saute onions with some salt. Add jalapenos before the onions are translucent, and cook for 2-3 minutes.

Add corn and tomatoes. I like to mash my tomatoes with the empty can to chop them up a little. When it starts to simmer, since the corn is frozen it will take a bit of time, then add black beans, garlic powder, cumin, and pepper to taste, and simmer about 15 minutes stirring occasionally.

Serve warm and squeeze lime juice and add chopped cilantro to top.

The cilantro and lime at the end really kick it up a notch and compliment all the flavors!

This would be great as a burrito filling too, I would add some veggie-meat and maybe some rice. I also have fallen in love with fat free sour cream! Have to try it!