Part of the work of bringing in potted plants for the winter is making sure that I don’t bring unwanted critters in as well. I especially don’t want spider mites and such in the house. They’ll find us later in the winter anyway when the dry air in the house and lack of natural predators makes life easy for them. I have had scales on my Schefflera and on the two jasmine plants, and spider mites love my little palm thingies (I think they are what they call “parlor palms”).
Today when I brought in yet another little palm I noticed the tell-tale fine spider webs around the base of the stems. As I am out of poison to spray the plants with I put the plant in the kitchen sink and proceeded to use the sprayer to hopefully hose spider web and spider mites off. Without looking too carefully, I glanced and instead of spider mites I saw a real spider, itty bitty tiny, maybe one millimeter (including legs), and an egg sack, twice or three times as large as the spider, attached to one of the lower leaves. I sprayed and to my dismay was unable to dislodge the spider.
And then I saw. The spider frantically moved closer to the egg sack and looked like it was trying to fix it? or protect it? doing it’s itty bitty tiny thing. I watched and for the next couple minutes the spider worked around the egg sack. It is too tiny for me to see what exactly it was doing – and not knowing anything about spiders I would not have known even if I had been able to see more clearly. But it was obvious that the spider was working frantically on the egg sack.
I can not describe the feeling this caused me. I felt like crying.
For now, parlor palm with spider and egg sack (dry by now) are sitting with another outside potted plant on part of the kitchen counter we use to store things.