Master Gardener Logo

Cass County Extension

Cass County Logo

Wasps & Hornets

Yellow jackets, hornets and mud daubers are all wasps which can give you problems during the summer months. The hornets and mud daubers build their nests above ground, often in trees, shrubs or under the eaves on your home. The yellow jackets usually build their nests below ground level. The hornets and yellow jackets build football shaped paper nests, which are abandoned in the fall of the year. These nests disintegrate during the winter or are torn apart by birds or squirrels.

Wasps and hornets are social insects that often take up habitation close to our homes. As a group, they are beneficial since they attack and destroy harmful insects around the home and in gardens. However, their presence is undesirable since they defend their nests vigorously and may sting anyone who approaches. Their sting can be medically dangerous to sensitive people as well as being painful. If wasps build their nests too close to your home or in the bushes where your children play, destroy their nests.

Commercially produced "wasp and hornet" aerosol sprays are quite effective and economical for ridding your house and yard of wasps . These aerosol sprays are designed to squirt a stream of insecticide 8-15 feet, allowing you to treat the nest from a distance. Treatment should be directed at the nest and applied at dusk, when the wasp have returned to their nest and are quiet for the night. Direct a steady spray on the nest or into the opening for 5-10 seconds and then get away for your own protection. Check to see if there is wasp activity the nest day; if not, knock down the nest and dispose of it.

Todd Weinmann, Extension Horticulturist & Master Gardener Coordinator
Phone: (701) 241-5707

Go to Information Page

Go to Horticulture Page