We all have to deal with pests in our gardens from time to time. The question is, what remedies will we reach for? Picking up a can of insecticide has personal and environmental risks, and therefore we often look for a less toxic solution. In addition, many pests we are attempting to control are developing a resistance to chemicals, so their effectiveness is diminishing. A great alternative is to introduce safe, natural, beneficial insects insects to your garden.
Every pest has a natural enemy – that is how nature keeps itself in balance. By introducing beneficial insects early in the season when pest levels are low, nature will take its course. Beneficials don’t bother people, plants or pets – they only attack the insect pests. Most people start using beneficial insects over chemicals out of safety concerns, and are often pleasantly surprised to realize they are easier to use, give better long term results, and are priced competitively.
Now is a great time to think about adding some beneficial insects to your garden! We currently are well-stocked with:
- lady bugs ~ they love to feast on aphids, whitefly, fruit worm, mites, mealybugs, scales. Release them at night to encourage them to stay on your rose bushes longer. They are also very territorial and when they hatch in your garden, they’ll consider it home.
- praying mantis ~ these are great predators in the garden, and so interesting to watch! They make a great project for kids as well.
- beneficial nematodes ~ these target fleas, grubs, cranefly, and root weevil, as well as dozens more. For the average homeowner, beneficial nematodes offer the greatest value because of the wide variety of pests they control. Any pest that spends any part of it’s life cycle in the soil falls prey to this microscopic predator.