(Image by Sappymoosetree – Creative Commons)
Bed bugs a re a terrible pest that is now present in up to 30% of US homes. Researchers are desperate to find a way to kill them, as they are very resistant to insecticides.
A physical trap approach might be the solution, thanks to a Balkan folk remedy.
“A material designed to mimic the hooked hairs found on leaves could help trap and control bedbugs, the Journal of the Royal Society Interface reports. The US scientists were inspired by a traditional Balkan remedy that used kidney-bean leaves to combat the pest. Infestations have increased worldwide, partly due to pesticide resistance. An ensnaring solution could sidestep this.
…The researchers were inspired by an age-old remedy formerly used in Bulgaria and Serbia where kidney-bean leaves were strewn on the floor next to beds to trap the bugs. The greenery was burned the next day. Bedbugs have no evolutionary link with bean plants – although the general idea that plants have developed to trap insects like aphids and spider mites is known. “