The trimming crew from Pawlaczyk's Ever Green Landscaping noticed a hornet nest in one of our weeping crab apple trees earlier in the summer. It was about the size of a baseball. The team leader was stung and her entire arm was temporarily numbed. They sprayed it with insecticide and left the tree untrimmed.
This week they returned and informed me the nest had grown to the size of a basketball.
I'm no hornet expert, but the shape of the nest and the size and coloration of the hornets (seen at a safe distance with 10 X binoculars) are consistent with Bald Faced Hornets. Jim McCormick has a great post on these nasty critters.
I remembered reading about someone (Russell Lamp) who will remove these nests for free - using the hornets to make anti-venom. I located his information from an old Toledo Blade article and contacted him. Unfortunately, he is not allowed to collect nests that have been sprayed.
I was happy to give the business to the exterminators we have used for years. This morning the task was complete.