Garden Friend or Foe: Japanese Blue Wing Wasp

In organic gardening knowing your friends and foes is essential.  It was the last day of August yesterday and my garden friends are quickly disappearing along with the beautiful foliage and blooms.  But on one side of my deck I grow some pretty robust chive that blooms late in the year. That is where I found an entire swarm of big, blueish-black winged waspish flies. The walkway off my deck to the barn is small and the chives hang over a bit with the zinnias so needless to say I was a bit nervous to just plow through with no alarm to how bad the sting could possibly be from one of these things. So I kept my distance, but  as usual, I got as close as I could without alarming anyone and started snapping. Next steps were as I am sure you guessed. Good ole Google!  So what are these fellow, friends or foes? 

Here is a short video of how many wasp were on my chives. 

Boy, oh boy do we ever have an abundance of wasp species around here.  They make me nervous because I do not fare well from stings, but they are such great pollinators I just keep my distance and let by-gones be by-gones over that. And turns out, these beauties are very docile. But don't go grabbing them because the female will sting if you try to get all up in her business.  But won't we all? 
  • Scientific name: scolia dubia (I never know why)
  • Late season pollinator. 
  • Not a nester. Busy collecting nectar by day and hang out in bushes and sleeps in the grass at night. 
  • AKA: Digger Wasp as they dig for larger meals
  • Predator of beetles, especially the Japanese beetle larvae. 
That predator of beetles thing is all I need to know! I now have a grub worm predator on my little urban farmish, and that makes me very happy! Those Japanese beetles...ugh.

And then the next morning... 
You know that part in the facts list about these guys sleeping in the grass?  Looks like Dude laid out all night and didn't make it home?  They really should've limited his bar tab! haha

Flip on Y'all!

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