Deck the halls with...spiders?
No one wants their Christmas spirit ruined by creepy-crawlers. So if you're considering buying a freshly-cut evergreen, you may want to take some precautions before trimming the tree inside.
Here are a few ways to avoid the holiday hitchhikers this Christmas season:
1. Iowa State University entomologists suggest that you check your tree for nests, spider webs, and eggs along the branches and trunk, before buying them. Bugs are dormant during the cold months, but when you bring your tree inside your home into a warm environment they are tricked into thinking its the spring, and may wake up.
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2. Examine the underside of tree branches where the needles attach to the branch, as that is where many aphids tend to attach to feed on the sap from the needles, according to Iowa State University.
3. Do your research! Norwegian pines and Eastern White pines are said to have the most critters living in them, so thoroughly inspect them before bringing home, Penn State College of Agricultural Sciences suggests.
4. Let the tree stand in your garage for at least 24-hours before bringing inside, and shake it out thoroughly before doing so.
5. While pesticide sprays seem like the most reasonable response when finding bugs in your tree, they could actually be hazardous. The chemicals may be flammable and could cause a fire if exposed to hot Christmas lights. Your family's health could also suffer from the chemical fumes.