Ladybirds, or given their proper name, Coccinellidae, are a family of small beetles (not bugs) with the name deriving from the Latin coccineus meaning ‘scarlet’. Although I can’t imagine anyone shouting Coccinellidae! when they see a ladybird.
The term ‘ladybird’ came about in Britain due to the red coat being worn by the Virgin Mary in many paintings and the seven black spots (the most common variety in UK) relate to her seven sorrows and seven joys, apparently.
My garden picture above is of a ladybird settled on the flowers of the Rumex obtusifolious, known as a dock leaf plant to us mere mortals. And whilst the dock leaf grows near stinging nettles, as I have in my garden, there is actually no evidence they ease the sting from said nettles, unless there is some cooling or placebo effect. If you think it works, then why not?! (I swear dock leaves work for me).
And as a bonus, here’s a clip of the backside of one of my visiting hedgehogs, who adores the stinging nettles. Happy Friday!
©2020 Emma Powell