September 21, 2008
Sometimes I wonder. I have tried almost every natural remedy known to man and they keep coming in. Last Tuesday, I went to the neighbors and asked if they had any way to blow Sevin dust under the house. No, but they had some bombs left over from clearing fleas out of a house they hoped to sell. I rationalized that UNDER the house isn’t IN the house and agreed for the bombs to be set off the next day. I’d sprayed the yard with beneficial nematodes that evening since it had rained (!) the day before.
Another “non-toxic” killer is supposed to be baby oil mixed in equal parts with water. I haven’t tried that because I think it would make a royal mess if I put it on top of the salt that’s already trying to do the critters in. When I looked it up online, I didn’t find anything about spraying the carpet and furniture with it but baby oil alone is supposed to keep fleas from climbing legs. HA! I think it has something in it that they like or they are woefully ignorant and don’t know they are supposed to slide off.
I hadn’t been home from the time I left for work until I got back from prayer meeting. The deed had been done. Only time will tell if it did any good.
Next evening, my neighbor told me the fleas could get worse in the house since their under-the-house-abode had been rendered uninhabitable. I assured her I hadn’t been bitten once since I got home. I guess they were just asleep. When I got back in the house, one of them must’ve played “Reveille“. They woke up and made my life miserable again.
One thing I’ve found that will give Twinkle some relief is to sprinkle garlic powder on the spots she can’t reach and lick. She loves for me to do it. I think she knows it will chase the fleas away. I was mixing it with baby oil and rubbing it on my skin until it started burning and then I stopped. I don’t have fur to protect me.
My neighbor had been to the Farmers Co-Op and said a woman in there told her black walnut leaves and nuts would chase fleas away. There are numerous black walnut trees around here. The nuts aren’t ready yet but I gathered as many leaves as I could reach and have them scattered around here and there. Are the fleas are educated about the repellent qualities of the Mighty Walnut? It’s an old wives’ tale. I’ve always wondered if it’s an old tale perpetrated by wives or one spread by old wives…
There are places in the house I haven’t had time to clear out and treat with salt. The varmints could be hiding there and making babies. That will be my main project the coming week.
Friday night, I went to bed with the conviction the salt and walnut leaves would keep me safe. I turned the light off at 9:30, the earliest I’ve been able to turn in for weeks. At 9:37, I was up and in the bathroom running bath water so I could drown fleas. I had boiled some black walnut leaves the night before and put the liquid in a spray bottle. With the bed lightly sprayed with that and the pests turned into sailors, I went to bed and was able to sleep well all night. I got up at 7 a.m.
Last night, I went ahead and sprayed and soaked before I went to bed. Five minutes after going to bed, I was up and got the vacuum cleaner. I put the upholstery attachment on it and vacuumed the bed. For a wonder, I hadn’t pulled the plug when I soaked but left the water in the tub. I got back in and scrubbed from head to toe with Melaleuca Naturals shampoo. I went back to bed and a flea-less sleep. I keep thinking that someday I will be back to a relatively peaceful existence.
I made plans to reinforce the killing with boric acid around the edges of the carpet. That was altered when I couldn’t find it at Lowe’s or Wally World. I was tired of Twinkle’s scratching and biting so I found some Sergeant’s Nature’s Guardian with peppermint oil, clove oil, and lemon grass oil in canola, vanillin and citric acid. She held very still while I applied it to the back of her neck and she’s resting for a change. I wonder if it would work on me?
When DD and I had our visit today, she expressed merm’s reluctance to come into my invaded space. I assured her I was taking care of the critters and they will be gone by the time they get here. Believe me, living in this house is no picnic except for the fleas and they have been eating well. They won’t much longer, though! I still have a few tricks up my sleeve. I had planned to bomb the place if all else failed but my sister wrote me about one of her friends using bombs or something similar. She got sick and never really recovered. I’ve wondered about lingering maladies from it. Some of the people who have been advising me to use poisons have health problems. Not good advertising.
She will give Twinkle a bath during their visit. I wish her luck. She gives their monstrously huge cat, Pixel, baths several times a year so I guess she’s a pro by now.