Ask a Question forum: silky spider web like material

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Petersburg, Virginia
henry2856
Sep 25, 2017 11:09 AM CST
I keep getting this "silky, spider web like material" that grows on my mailbox mounted on the house, and also on my front lights and shutters on the front of the house. I clean it off and a day or 2 later, it's back, very annoying. What is it and how do I control it? Thank you very much.
Name: Amber
Greenwell Springs, LA (Zone 8b)
amberlynn5978
Sep 25, 2017 12:41 PM CST
It's most likely spider webs and I don't think you can prevent it without messing up the bug ecosystem. I once made the mistake of trying to get rid of mosquito hawks and ended up with a whole new set of bug problems that were more annoying than the original problem.

Spiders work pretty quickly...I've had them recreate webs in my house within a day of me vacuuming them. I just continue to clean them up and try to get rid of the food they eat from being around my foundation or in my house (ants, etc). When there's less food, they're less likely to hang around. Outside it's hard to control that without a bunch of chemicals.
Name: woofie
NE WA (Zone 5a)
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woofie
Sep 25, 2017 9:03 PM CST
Yes, spiders can create a whole new web overnight. I had one that liked to spin his web right outside my front door. I'd just duck under it and go on to work every morning. But I think the mailman must have walked into it every day, because it would be gone in the evening, but good as new the next morning. Big Grin (It's a wonder I got my mail!)
Confidence is that feeling you have right before you do something really stupid.
Name: Sandy B.
Ford River, Michigan UP (Zone 4b)
(Zone 4b-maybe 5a)
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Weedwhacker
Sep 25, 2017 9:56 PM CST
Welcome to NGA, @Henry2856 and @Amberlynn5978 .

I agree, if it looks like spider web material it probably is Smiling

You could try wiping down the mailbox and other areas with vinegar, which seems to deter spiders from building their webs. There are other organic sprays for spiders, including peppermint oil mixed with water. I love spiders, as long as they aren't in or on my house Smiling
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[Last edited by Weedwhacker - Sep 25, 2017 9:57 PM (+)]
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Name: Carol
Santa Ana, ca
Sunset zone 22, USDA zone 10 A.
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ctcarol
Sep 26, 2017 12:27 PM CST
Woofie, Maybe the spider picked up it's web itself. I have watched them eat their web in the mornings. Interesting critters to watch.
Name: woofie
NE WA (Zone 5a)
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woofie
Sep 26, 2017 3:34 PM CST
Never had a chance to watch. Interesting idea. No idea what kind of spider it was. Good size one, down in SoCal. Maybe an inch or so across?
Confidence is that feeling you have right before you do something really stupid.
Name: Carol
Santa Ana, ca
Sunset zone 22, USDA zone 10 A.
Charter ATP Member Hummingbirder Lover of wildlife (Black bear badge) Orchids Region: California Plant Identifier
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ctcarol
Sep 26, 2017 3:41 PM CST
I'm about as SO. Cal as you can get, and I sit on my porch with coffee and smokes in the mornings. I see all kinds of interesting things from my perch. Smiling
Name: greene
Savannah, GA (Sunset 28) (Zone 8b)
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greene
Sep 26, 2017 4:08 PM CST
Yes, many spiders set up their web for the night and remove it in the morning. I learned this the hard way...by walking into the huge web face first to hang clothes on the line early in the morning. By 9 am the spider takes the web down and at night she makes a new web to catch night-flying insects attracted to the porch light.

Sometimes all you need to do is keep the lights off and the spiders may move to a different location.
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Name: Carol
Santa Ana, ca
Sunset zone 22, USDA zone 10 A.
Charter ATP Member Hummingbirder Lover of wildlife (Black bear badge) Orchids Region: California Plant Identifier
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ctcarol
Sep 26, 2017 4:42 PM CST
I have to say, the ones that build webs on the skirting don't remove their webs, and I have to sweep them off, or it does look messy.
Name: woofie
NE WA (Zone 5a)
Charter ATP Member Garden Procrastinator Greenhouse Dragonflies Plays in the sandbox I was one of the first 300 contributors to the plant database!
The WITWIT Badge I helped plan and beta test the plant database. Dog Lover Enjoys or suffers cold winters Container Gardener Seed Starter
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woofie
Sep 26, 2017 9:18 PM CST
I had no idea they actually removed their webs. Interesting!
Confidence is that feeling you have right before you do something really stupid.
Name: Sandy B.
Ford River, Michigan UP (Zone 4b)
(Zone 4b-maybe 5a)
Charter ATP Member I was one of the first 300 contributors to the plant database! Garden Sages Million Pollinator Garden Challenge Seed Starter Vegetable Grower
Greenhouse Region: United States of America Region: Michigan Enjoys or suffers cold winters Butterflies Birds
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Weedwhacker
Sep 26, 2017 9:39 PM CST
woofie said:I had no idea they actually removed their webs. Interesting!


Neither did I -- that's really quite fascinating. Thumbs up
“Think occasionally of the suffering of which you spare yourself the sight." ~ Albert Schweitzer /
Cubits.org - A Universe of Communities[/I] / Share your recipes: Favorite Recipes A-Z cubit
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Name: Carol
Santa Ana, ca
Sunset zone 22, USDA zone 10 A.
Charter ATP Member Hummingbirder Lover of wildlife (Black bear badge) Orchids Region: California Plant Identifier
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ctcarol
Sep 27, 2017 12:01 PM CST
Not all do. I'm guessing it has to do with location of web and species of spider.

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