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Tuesday, August 16, 2011

Yellow Jackets + Repurpose + DE

Reuse to save money? I repurpose the Kraft Parmesan Cheese shaker. It holds the DE for outdoor fly control without have to buy something else to apply the dust. It's free=cheap. I have four shakers, full, ready for use.  The shakers of the Kraft products and other products are all over my house. They hold baking soda for cleaning in the bathroom.

I would have shown all four shakers, but I tripped on my extra-tall step, slammed into the rocker, and knocked all four of these off. I could only reach two.

My poor hens do not like going near peaches with yellow jackets on them. The hens avoid their food. I did not take a picture of the hundred (not kidding) yellow jackets because I do not feel like trying to bend over and keep my balance while trying to hold a camera steady.

A yellow jacket invasion could cause a tremendous problem for me or anyone who attempts to walk or mow in my yard. If you have ever been in a swarm of yellow jackets pouring from the ground, you know what I mean. They will chase you even into the house. Ask me how I know.

If fruit trees are left with fallen fruit, yellow jackets form nests under the trees, attracted by food. Wouldn't you move next to fruit tree or grocery store where the food was abundant and free? If all you had to do was dig a little hole and had no rent or furniture to move, it would be  a good deal.

I have a shaker of DE (diatomaceous earth) that I use for fly control. So, I took it and heavily sprinkled it on the yellow jackets. Even though covered in the dust, they flew or hovered. I fled.

The picture below is without DE.

This one below has DE sprinkled on it.

The DE reduced the flies on the fruit in the box by about 90%. Plus, any fly eggs will be destroyed by the DE. I feed the DE to my girls to reduce parasites. People eat DE every day for their health.

Now, all feverish I have to go put some more DE and leaves over the fruit. Exbf will remove all the fruit tomorrow. But, it seems I must act soon before the yellow jackets decide this is a good place to live, a yard with abundance.

There were three or four one day and a hundred the next. I don't need holes in the ground and swarming yellow jackets. So, no, I do not feel well enough to do this!

There is about 15 or 20 pounds of produce in a box waiting to be dumped in for the hens. Right now, they are in the yard, but I want to lie down lots today, nap a bit, and cannot leave them unattended. Okay, sometimes I don't see or hear them for hours while they roam the yard. But, they won't leave the yard. I just worry a dog will chase them. I can hear when they are in trouble if I am not asleep or lying in the bedroom with the ac on.

By the way, my hens are terrified of the DE cloud. It could potentially harm their lungs and mine. Now, they are terrified of the shaker. If I pick it up or they see it, they run for their lives.  I use a Kraft Parmesan cheese shaker for the DE. There is quite a cloud that forms, especially in a slight breeze. They squawk and flee as fast as their legs will take them if they see me dusting 15 ft from them. Smart girls?

From the box in the picture, I took several huge slices of watermelon and some other fruit. I have bend over to place the watermelon. If I don't place it on the ground, just tossing it all, inevitably the watermelon lands upside down. Since the hens cannot turn it over, they have to peck through the watermelon rind to eat it. I try to help them out. This time, I almost fell on my face...seriously a face plant in watermelon. I am off-balance from the sinus infection, fever, and general malaise.

I made a decision--I will dry all clothes in the dryer! I cannot hang clothes in the sun. Bending even to the small table on which I place the basket would just be too much. Plus, the antibiotic will cause a reaction if I am in the sun too much.

Your turn
Have you ever gotten into a swarm of yellow jackets? Seen it happen to anyone? Seen the consequences? How did you rid your yard of a yellow jacket nest? Do you ever repurpose shakers? Have you ever used DE?


  1. Not yellow jackets but a wasps nest. We burned it. First we dropped it into a heavy metal can with a cover that had some kerosene already in it. Then a brave soul lit a match and dropped it in. We were very young. There was probably an easier, safer way.
    Can you get those insect bombs....they are applied from 20 feet away. I can't think of the name. You still might want to run even then and you have to go back to get any angry survivors. Ask at the hardware store.

    I use the shakers for homemade house leaning powder too :)

  2. I don't know where there is a nest to bomb. I just hope there is not one in the yard yet.

    When my children were young, they and half the neighborhood children watch at a safe distance while I burned out a yellow jacket nest in the ground. It was exciting to all of us. I used a shovel to lift dirt and my son was instructed to pour gasoline into the crevice I opened. Then, I made sure he and the gasoline container were about 80 feet away. Then, I lit a match and dropped it in while I was about 4 feet away. Wow...was it ever spectacular. But there were no more yellowjackets.

    I don't want a bomb around my chickens or where they might scratch. Poison....

    Kerosene is safe to drop a match into. It is not volatile. However, if the can is full of gasoline, a match will not ignite and explode. It is dropping a gasoline into a can not full that ignites the gasoline and makes a bomb. Remember, kerosene is used safely in lamps.

    But it does sound

    Baking soda in the bathroom is in the Kraft shaker as I speak.


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