Argiope aurantia

by Rachel Creager Ireland


Years before Veronica’s Garden, I briefly had a blog at the Prairie Fire Inn and Spa site. It got lost in an upgrade, and I had failed to back up properly, so we’ll probably never see what I wrote there. I do recall, however, writing a post about the black and yellow garden spider. All I remember of that post was saying that this spider is as lovely as any flower in the garden, and underappreciated because she is a spider. It’s still true.

Wikipedia tells us that the large, brightly colored Argiope is the female, and her name means “golden silver-face.”

Some years we had lots of them. There might be three or four in front of the office, in the peonies, under the sign. But they’ve been rare at best for several years, so I’m pleased that our place is once again home to my favorite arachnid, and in such a prominent place. There might be some symmetry in it, from their abundance in the early years, and their return now after absence as we are actively working toward selling the property.

There’s work I ought to do behind that door you see above. But this Argiope has been in front of the door for several days now. I suppose I’ll find a workaround, such as my current solution, which is writing this post in the motel office rather than in my beloved studio. The chair here wracks my hips, but she’s worth it.