Tuesday, July 13, 2010

Gangsta Gardener


Yo, yo the gangsta gardener is in the haus! Would you believe that is me under that get-up? (Shout out to my photographer- the Fisherman, and my wonderfully hilarious brother for the "title")Here is the account of how the Gangsta Gardener came to be and a warning to all about poison ivy....

Earlier this summer I was on a Saturday morning wog (walk/jog) with Sweet Pea. Being the socialites we are, we stopped by my dear friend Susan's house for a visit and a cool-down. (Sweet Pea is good friends with Susan's girls) Anywho- I showed my friend these blistery bites on the back of my knee. I asked her if she thought they were mosquito bites? Her reply? "NO, they don't look like mosquito bites." The conversation went back and forth and at one point, Susan suggested they could be bedbug bites - WHAT!!! I am not known for being overly dramatic (do I hear laughing?), I went home and announced to the fam that we must commence to cleaning the beds, as we have bedbugs.

Note: at this point, any normal person would inspect any bed partners- like Mr.Pearl and then check other household members for bedbug bites. (which by the way, no one had any) Oh no, not me. I was being proactive!

So, I stripped all beds, washed and bleached every sheet, mattress cover, pillow cover - you get the point. Vacuumed the mattresses- our house was CLEAN! No sign of any offensive critters. (I don't suggest looking-up info on bedbugs. The info will convince you they are everywhere and will keep you up at night). I then decided to check the furry pearls for fleas. Two baths and one soaked momma later - no fleas! Shout-out to Advantage- it works!
The next day, my blistery bites were oozy, yellow, crusty sores that itched like nothing I have ever felt! I had not slept in two nights as the itching was keeping me awake, and this was the day we were taking the two oldest mini-pearls to Pine Cove for a week. Being laid-up with oozy sores was not on my plan for the week! By the end of the day, I was in tears, my pants were stuck to my sores and I was hysterical from lack of sleep- what is this hell??!!
I got into my dermatologist the next morning. I think God might look a lot like him. He took one look at me and said with confidence that I had contact dermatitis from Poison ivy. Oh, and I was extremely sensitive to it! So, a steroid shot and three creams later-(the sores were on my legs, arms and face!) I was feeling better, but confused. I hadn't been anywhere exotic and wild to get this! I asked him if he was sure it wasn't bedbugs- he laughed!!!
So, after some sleep and soul searching, I finally remembered tending to my hydrangea bushes in the front yard the day before the blisters appeared! BINGO! I found poison ivy and poison oak!
This leads back to the Gansta Gardener...I am now terrified of these little plants. Terrified! But I was determined to face my fears and eradicate them myself, so I would know they were truly gone. Mr. Pearl offered, but no, I had to do this myself. I made sure every piece of skin and hair was covered, as I didn't want to take any chances of inhaling the poison. I think my wellies were a nice touch though!

To get rid of poison ivy, oak or sumac: cut the plants down to an inch or two above the ground. Saturate the stem and ground around it with a poison made for killing these menaces. Be careful though! The poison will kill all the good plants, too! And, wear long pants and boots when gardening in thick plant growth - even in your own front yard!!

Peace out,


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