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How a Leafy Folk Remedy Stopped Bedbugs in Their Tracks
NY Times ^ | 4/9/13 | Megan W. Szyndler and Catherine Loudon

Posted on 04/12/2013 8:50:30 PM PDT by LibWhacker

Generations of Eastern European housewives doing battle against bedbugs spread bean leaves around the floor of an infested room at night. In the morning, the leaves would be covered with bedbugs that had somehow been trapped there. The leaves, and the pests, were collected and burned — by the pound, in extreme infestations.

Now a group of American scientists is studying this bedbug-leaf interaction, with an eye to replicating nature’s Roach Motel.

A study published Wednesday in The Journal of the Royal Society Interface details the scientists’ quest, including their discovery of how the bugs get hooked on the leaves, how the scientists have tried to recreate these hooks synthetically and how their artificial hooks have proved to be less successful than the biological ones.

At first glance, the whole notion seems far-fetched, said Catherine Loudon, a biologist at the University of California, Irvine, who specializes in bedbug locomotion.

“If someone had suggested to me that impaling insects with little tiny hooks would be a valid form of pest control, I wouldn’t have given it credence,” she said in an interview. “You can think of lots of reasons why it wouldn’t work. That’s why it’s so amazing.”

But even though there is no indication that the bean leaves and the bedbugs evolved to work together, the leaves are fiendishly clever in exploiting the insects’ anatomy. Like the armor covering knights in medieval times, the bedbug’s exoskeleton has thinner areas where its legs flex and its tiny claws protrude — like the spot where a greave, or piece of leg armor, ends.

“The areas where they appear to be pierceable,” Dr. Loudon said, “are not the legs themselves. It’s where they bend, where it’s thin. That’s where they get pierced.”

(Excerpt) Read more at nytimes.com ...


TOPICS: News/Current Events
KEYWORDS: bean; bedbugs; leaf
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1 posted on 04/12/2013 8:50:30 PM PDT by LibWhacker
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To: LibWhacker

Which bean plants do they use for the piercing leaves? My cousin has a bad bedbug problem in his apratment building.


2 posted on 04/12/2013 8:56:40 PM PDT by MHGinTN (Being deceived can be cured.)
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To: LibWhacker

It would have been helpful if the author had stated which variety of bean leaves - lima, green, pinto, fava?


3 posted on 04/12/2013 8:56:53 PM PDT by bgill
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To: LibWhacker

Isn’t this similar to what borax?? does to fleas?

A few years back, I had a pretty bad flea infestation. (No pets, but there were tons of feral cats hanging around)
I bought a 3 lb jar of this stuff called “Fleabusters”
Still have almost 3 lbs!

Only used maybe two tablespoons of the stuff spread around and NO FLEAS! The fleas BIT THE DUST!

Orthoboric acid, 64%

Not cheap, $45 for 3 lbs, but genocide for fleas!


4 posted on 04/12/2013 8:56:56 PM PDT by djf (Rich widows: My Bitcoin address is... 1ETDmR4GDjwmc9rUEQnfB1gAnk6WLmd3n6)
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Comment #5 Removed by Moderator

To: bgill
"It would have been helpful if the author had stated which variety of bean leaves - lima, green, pinto, fava?"

The video linked in the article identifies them as kidney bean leaves.

6 posted on 04/12/2013 9:03:44 PM PDT by Joe 6-pack (Qui me amat, amat et canem meum.)
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To: bgill

Kidney Beans


7 posted on 04/12/2013 9:04:25 PM PDT by Cololeo (`)
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To: MHGinTN

“...scientists from the University of Kentucky and University of California-Irvine think they’ve found an ingenious and natural method to eradicate bedbugs — using kidney bean leaves, which have a unique design in their hairs that ensnares the pests. “

http://www.kentucky.com/2013/04/09/2593696/uk-researchers-kidney-bean-leaves.html


8 posted on 04/12/2013 9:04:50 PM PDT by mrsmith (Dumb sluts: Lifeblood of the Media, Backbone of the Democrat Party!)
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To: bgill

kidney bean leaves

you can google it


9 posted on 04/12/2013 9:06:38 PM PDT by Reaganez
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To: LibWhacker
But the commercial availability of pesticides like DDT in the 1940s temporarily halted the legions of biting bugs. As their pesticide-resistant descendants began to multiply from Manhattan to Moscow, though,

I wonder if that is accurate, or if that could have been written with just a little more detail which would have made it accurate?

10 posted on 04/12/2013 9:07:44 PM PDT by ansel12 (The lefts most effective quote-I'm libertarian on social issues, but conservative on economics.)
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To: bgill

Ok, found another article that states it is kidney bean leaves and more specifically the underside of the kidney bean leaf having the hooks. Now, if only they’d said which side to place upwards. If the bedbugs crawl across the floor, then bottom side down or if they fall off from up high somewhere and onto the leaves then bottom side up. Maybe just go with half one way and half the other. Wonder if this works with other bugs? Wonder if other varieties of bean leaves work, too. Squash and cucumbers have hairy leaves but it doesn’t slow down squash bugs so there’s something unique with the kidney bean leaves. This might explain why beans usually aren’t bothered by bugs. Hmm, something to think about.

http://www.redorbit.com/news/science/1112819742/bean-leaves-natural-pesticide-bedbugs-041013/


11 posted on 04/12/2013 9:08:48 PM PDT by bgill
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To: bgill
Known colloquially as Phaseolus vulgaris L..
12 posted on 04/12/2013 9:10:42 PM PDT by steve86 (Acerbic by Nature, not NurtureĀ™)
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To: MHGinTN
WEDNESDAY, April 10 (HealthDay News) — A centuries-old bedbug remedy has scientists full of beans — kidney beans to be precise. The bean leaves used to trap bedbugs hundreds of years ago in southeastern Europe may offer a model for a non-toxic, modern-day treatment, say U.S. researchers. The biting nocturnal insects have invaded U.S. homes, hotels, schools, hospitals and more in recent years, causing widespread itching, burning and psychological distress. “Plants exhibit extraordinary abilities to entrap insects,” the study’s lead author, Catherine Loudon, an entomologist at the University of California, Irvine, said in a university news release. “Modern scientific techniques let us fabricate materials at a microscopic level, with the potential to ‘not let the bedbugs bite’ without pesticides.” Microscopic hairs on kidney bean leaves stab the insects, effectively trapping them, the researchers discovered. They are using their findings to develop non-toxic synthetic materials that will mimic the effects of the bean leaves and help prevent bedbug infestations, according to the report, published online April 9 in the Journal of the Royal Society Interface.
13 posted on 04/12/2013 9:11:12 PM PDT by oldbrowser (We have a rogue government in Washington)
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To: bgill

The first response to the article from David B of Maryland mentioned kidney bean leaf, but he too asked which variety? So, now you know where to google.


14 posted on 04/12/2013 9:12:39 PM PDT by miele man
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To: LibWhacker

Whats wrong with spraying Raid? :-)


15 posted on 04/12/2013 9:17:16 PM PDT by Georgia Girl 2 (The only purpose of a pistol is to fight your way back to the rifle you should never have dropped.)
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To: Georgia Girl 2
Whats wrong with spraying Raid? :-)

it dries up the kidney bean leaves....

16 posted on 04/12/2013 9:22:36 PM PDT by Doogle (USAF.68-73..8th TFW Ubon Thailand..never store a threat you should have eliminated))
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To: MHGinTN
Which bean plants do they use for the piercing leaves?

http://www.popsci.com/science/article/2013-04/building-better-bed-bug-trap

17 posted on 04/12/2013 9:31:15 PM PDT by JohnG45
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To: MHGinTN

Another method. Search engine food- grade diatomaceous earth and cedar oil to get rid of bed bugs. I know a landlord who uses both with great success.


18 posted on 04/12/2013 9:33:53 PM PDT by lysie
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To: DesertRhino

“I remember when America was great, we used DDT and we didn’t import people wholesale from the third world hellholes.”

Worth repeating.


19 posted on 04/12/2013 9:47:55 PM PDT by Pelham (Without Deportation you have De Facto Amnesty.)
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To: djf

Orthoboric acid? Is that a specialty product?

I got a 1-lb container of 100% boric acid for an ant infestation a couple of years ago for $2.00 at either Family Dollar or Dollar General.


20 posted on 04/12/2013 9:49:57 PM PDT by TomGuy
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