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cellar bug

cellar bug n
= sow bug n.
1898 Amer. Gardening 19.31, Sow bugs, or as some call them, cellar bugs, destroy many tender plants for me every year. 1915 Dallas Morning News (TX) 25 Apr sec 2 5/4, Tender young tomato plants and other small plants are often destroyed by what are variously known as “mealey bugs,” “sour bugs,” “cellar bugs,” etc. They are small, whitish and many-legged plant vermin. . . When disturbed they double up into a ball. 1966 KY Folkl. Rec. 12.11, Place sour bugs around children’s necks and they will dry the thrash. Sour bugs are small gray bugs found under dead stumps of trees or under railings and logs. They are also called “cellar bugs.” 1970 NC Folkl. 18.8, Collect gray “cellar bugs,” tie them in a rag and place them around a child’s neck to prevent difficult teething. 2003 Cavender Folk Med. 109 sAppalachians, Some people strung a little poke (bag) of nine sow bugs (also called “cellar bugs” or “roly polies”), rattlesnake bones, or red ants around the baby’s neck. 2011 in 2015 DARE File—Internet NY, I also had rolly pollys or cellar bugs as we called them in the backyard near the garage, which are a actually a kind of wood lice.
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