A Guide to Beneficial Insects for Your Gardens

Bugs love gardens, that’s a fact. Trying to fight the bugs that are destroying your garden can be difficult since the chemicals used to destroy bugs can often harm the plants as well. There are good bugs, though, that can actually be purchased and placed in your garden to keep other insects from destroying your yield. Imagine: purchasing bugs through the mail – yuck! But, if you want the healthiest garden possible, you might consider doing just that.

One such bug is the Green Lacewing. There are many different species and most of them look a lot alike. The adults aren’t really the predators, though. It’s the larvae that love to gorge on aphids, spider mites, whiteflies, moths, caterpillars, beetle larvae, and other pests. Their favorite places to set up homestead are cotton, corn, potatoes, tomatoes, peppers, eggplants, greens, apples and strawberries.

The Green Lacewing will not damage your flowers, fruits or veggies but they will get rid of pests that try. Once you’ve put a few in your garden your worries will be over because the Lacewing will continue to reproduce and guard your garden. The adults aren’t too scary-looking. They are usually green or yellow in color, with large antennae and golden eyes. Their wings are lacy-looking and the bug is less than an inch in length. You need approximately 1 bug for each square foot of garden. The bugs are usually sold by the thousand for around $10-$15.

Another helpful bug is the Trichogramma. It kills insect eggs that hatch into bugs that will eat your garden. And the great thing about this bug is that it won’t bother other helpful bugs, only the ones that harm your garden. Some bugs they eat are codling moths, cutworms and earworms. There are over 200 species of bugs that will be devoured by Trichogramma bugs which are wasp-like but are extremely tiny and won’t hurt humans. You can purchase about 4,000 larvae of the bug for about $5 to $7 and that’s enough to treat most average size gardens. Instructions on how and when to release the insects are enclosed when you order them. To treat acreage, release about 100,000 of the bugs per acre. Although this seems like a lot many will die, some will move on to other places, and you’ll be able to benefit from the remaining bugs.

If flies are a problem in your garden consider the fly parasite. An order of these runs about $15 and you get 2,000 pupae. The fly parasite lays her eggs in fly pupae and the parasites feed on and destroy most types of flies. These pests don’t bite or sting humans and are about the size of a gnat. They usually stay close to the dirt and don’t pester. Although they do not get rid of any other pest besides flies they do live well with other beneficial insects. The fly parasites are adaptable to all climates making them a good choice for gardeners in any state or country.

If you love gardening, but hate the insects that destroy your hard work, check online or locally for a gardening shop that sells beneficial insects. They usually aren’t expensive, do an impressive job, and don’t harm humans. In addition, the insects are the perfect alternative to chemical sprays and treatments that can harm pests, your garden, and yourself.

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