linda villano, serendipitea, ladybug, ladybugs, tea and bugs, ladybugs and tea
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  The Tea House Times Guest Blog - Linda Villano
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Ladybug, Ladybug by Linda Villano

Wednesday, March 19th 2014 @ 12:54 PM

Today Spring peeked out from under a vast curtain of dismal gray. Mother Nature staged a dress rehearsal for promise of what lies just beyond the Vernal Equinox.  Soon we’ll be surrounded by sprouts, flowers, greenery, sunshine, warm breezes, gardens brimming with fruits and veggies, worms, spiders and  critters galore!

But here let’s extoll the virtues of and give thanks to a most beautiful creature, the Ladybug.  Gardeners and farmers have long known that along with spiders, ladybugs lead the charge in natural pest control while causing no damage to the plants.  There is a story that brings us back to medieval Europe where people believed these beetles were sent from heaven to protect the crops.  They were dubbed “Bug of Our Lady”, a reference to the Virgin Mary which was, over time, was shortened to Ladybug.

In addition to botanical pests, Ladybugs need pollen for nourishment. They are attracted to umbrella shaped flowers such as fennel, dill, cilantro, caraway, angelica, tansy, wild carrot & yarrow. They also like white cosmos, coreopsis, scented geraniums, and dandelions.  Make a nice home for these lovelies, they hibernate in the cold weather and can live up to 3 years!

And what does this have to do with Tea?  We know that our little red speckled friends enjoy munching on aphids, larvae, mites, even powdery mildew.  So, when visiting organic tea gardens rest assured when met by Ladybugs that all is well.  She (or he) is an ecological indicator that pesticides are not in use.  

A glimpse of the bright, shiny red sure-footed bugs (the more the merrier) adorned with a spattering of black spots brings a sense of comfort and always makes me smile…..at home and abroad.

~ Linda Villano, SerendipiTea

 

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LINDA VILLANO co-founded SerendipiTea.com in 1995 with Tomislav Podreka. With a passion for all things Tea, she oversees all aspects of the business; including client consulting, concept and design, staff training, sourcing and product development (recipe creations). Having grown up in a family of restaurateurs and chefs, she considers her role as a purveyor of premium teas & tisanes a natural continuation of her family’s culinary tradition.   Linda is a published illustrator and writer. Her illustrations appear in Tomislav Podreka’s book, SerendipiTea: a guide to the varieties, origins and rituals of tea, and she writes articles about tea for trade publications.

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Comments

Victoria Bisogno (El Club del T)
guest
a guest said on Tuesday, April 1st 2014 @ 3:54 PM:

Beautiful article!


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