Garden Spiders

Facts, Identification & Control

Appearance

What do they look like?

Garden Spider Illustration Common Garden Spider Garden Spider Spinning Web

What are garden spiders?
Garden spiders are found on many continents throughout the globe. As their name suggests, garden spiders are most commonly found in gardens, meadows and clearings..

Garden spiders also are known as orb weavers due to their orb-shaped, delicate webs. Even garden spiderlings are capable of spinning these intricate structures without the assistance of mature spiders.

How Did I Get Garden Spiders?

Garden spiders weave their orb-shaped webs in sunny places with little or no wind. As long as their insect prey is plentiful, these pests will stay for an entire season. They prefer gardens and grassy areas, anchoring their webs among twigs and stems.

Homeowners may notice a sharp increase in garden spiders from March to May. Spiderlings hatch from egg cases in autumn but lay dormant through the winter. In spring, they leave the egg sac to search for food and mates.

How Serious Are Garden Spiders?

Overall, garden spiders are very beneficial because they help keep insect populations in check. However, their large orb webs can be troublesome to people near walkways, gates, or windows. Garden spiders are not aggressive and only attack when disturbed or handled, although their large webs and size of the adult females does give them a menacing appearance. A garden spider bite is typically less painful than a bee sting and garden spiders will attempt to flee, rather than bite an intruder.

How Can I Get Rid of Garden Spiders?

What Orkin Does
The Orkin Man™ is trained to help manage garden spiders and other pests. Since every yard or home is different, your Orkin technician will design a unique program for your situation.

Keeping spiders and arachnids out of your home is an ongoing process, not a one-time treatment. Orkin’s exclusive A.I.M. solution is a continuing cycle of three critical steps — Assess, Implement and Monitor.

The Orkin Man™ can provide the right solution to keep spiders in their place…out of your home.

For more information or to schedule an inspection, please contact your local Orkin branch office.

Habitat & Behavior

The most important determining factor in the dwelling place of the garden spider is the presence of twigs, trees, branches or plant leaves on which to construct webs. Garden spider webs are notoriously strong and may reach more than 60 cm in diameter.

Most garden spider habitats are also populated with a variety of potential prey. After prey becomes entangled in the web, garden spiders immobilize their victims and drag them to the center of the web. Prey must be liquefied with digestive enzymes before consumption is possible.

Webs

Close Up Garden Spider Spinning Web
Garden Spider
Spinning Web

The webs of garden spiders are notoriously strong. The garden spider uses its web to capture food. Although their eyesight is poor, garden spiders are extremely sensitive to vibrations along the strands of their webs. Positioning themselves at the center of their web, garden spiders hang upside down, jump on prey and paralyze it with injected venom. Like other spiders, garden spiders must liquefy their prey in order to consume it.

The garden spider also uses its extraordinary sense of touch for mating, as males tap upon the webs of females to express their intent. Because males spend the mating season obsessively seeking partners, they typically die of exhaustion and malnutrition following fertilization.

Do They Bite? Are They Poisonous?
Garden spiders typically are not aggressive and are not known to be medically important. It is unlikely that bites would occur unless someone disturbed a female in her web or gave reason for a garden spider to feel threatened. In the unlikely event of a bite, symptoms generally include mild swelling and discomfort that is rarely as painful as a wasp or bee sting.

More Information

Garden Spider Life Cycle

Black & Yellow Garden Spiders (Argiope aurantia)

Orange Garden Spiders (Araneus marmoreus)