Even More Bad News For Tick-Infested Gardens


Haven't ticks, which my vet says were never seen in Washington County, NY until the last decade, caused enough misery?

Apparently not.  The New York Times reported this week that another tick-borne disease called babesiosis is spreading rapidly.  And babesiosis, unlike Lyme, is sometimes fatal.


  1. Co-infections of the Lyme bacterium and babesiosis parasite occur in about 10% of tick bites in Connecticut, and I got both together in 2008. Babesiosis may have no symptoms of its own, but it often exacerbates the Lyme symptoms. I had facial paralysis, fever, intense pain — it was awful. I recovered, but the fear of a simple tick bite has not gone away. Makes gardening in CT unappealing at times.

  2. Laurrie, my sympathies. My country place is completely infested with ticks and I got Lyme a few years ago. I was instantly incredibly sick as soon as I pulled the tick out of my knee, so fortunately, I didn’t spend any time undiagnosed.

    I’ve had great luck since then wearing Insect Shield clothing: http://www.insectshield.com/.
    I’ve never been bitten when I’ve had even a single piece of this stuff on.

  3. Though this is only from personal experience, not researched, if Lyme is not caught in time it can result in death. I met two people who each lost a parent due to Lyme. I’ve known a few others who were initially misdiagnosed by a doctor, but who knew enough to demand medication and a second opinion.

  4. I’m glad to hear big media is finally getting the word out. Lyme is awful. The multiple potential co-infections, which can mimic the Lyme and be far worse, are very often ignored by docs who simply don’t know about them. For several years my Mom’s been battling the crazy mix-up that is a Lyme infection. Ugh!

    If a doctor ever tells you that you can’t have Lyme because it doesn’t exist where you live, remind them that if a deer can cross a state line, so can a Lyme tick. Oh, and it doesn’t just take a tick. The more I read, the more I learn that any blood sucker can transmit it (and all of its co-infection buddies). Did I say, UGH yet?

  5. The questionnaire for platelet and blood donors at my blood bank asks if you have ever had babesiosis. Guess more people will be answering yes.

  6. I live in the woods in a heavily deer populated area. I’ve had Lyme and have never taken the presence of a tick lightly since. I cover myself with Deep Woods Off before I go out and when I come in, clothes straight into the wash and me into the shower. I’ve also started putting out Tick Tubes all along our property and near our house. We were contacted by a group that wanted to use properties in our area for testing a particular pesticide for ticks but since it kills everything blindly and not just ticks we said no thanks. Ticks and mosquitoes are two parasites that I wish they could find a way to eliminate all together. The damage that they do to wildlife and people is awful. The poor moose up north that get so infected that they call them ghosts is just so sad. I hate ticks!!!!

  7. Although I am not an advocate of using chemicals in the yard or elsewhere, the same ingredient in Insect Shield’s line of clothing (permethrin) is used in Damminix Tick Tubes. The product eliminates hundreds of ticks without exposing beneficial insects to permethrin. It takes a couple of seasons of use to see a major effect – since the product targets larval and nymphal ticks that are feeding on mice. A common misconception is that deer carry Lyme but it is actually the white footed field mouse who is the most prominent carrier of Lyme, anaplasmosis and babesiosis. Ticks are disease-free until they feed on rodents. Another way to knock down the tick population is to remove acorns and other nuts from the ground. Nuts = more mice at night = more ticks.

  8. I’ve gone to white clothing with the pants tucked into my socks. It makes it easier to see any kind of insect that hitches a ride and keeps the ants out of your pants. Does it get dirty? You bet and I don’t wear it again. It goes right in the wash. I don’t look pretty, but I’m getting smarter and after two tick bites I don’t need that third strike!

  9. I’d only heard of babesiosis via the blood bank questionnaires. I suspect that Amy’s Wicked Bugs covers this.

    I will bear in mind the Insect Shield clothing should I ever find myself wandering in areas prone to ticks. I mostly stay out of those locations, and the bugs I deal with more often are pantry moths (why us?), My Little Slaves (bees, ladybugs, and the like), termites, and occasional other urban ones.

  10. My dad, a gardener and outdoorsman who lived in California, died from pulmonary and cardiac complications of Lyme disease.


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