It’s hard not to smile when you think about ladybugs. While other members of the beetle family are not so popular, ladybugs have found a place in many a gardener’s heart. I’m always amazed at how many ladybugs I find inside my house from fall through to spring. Walking here and there but really not going any where. They always get a free ride to my nearest indoor plant but more often than not they remove themselves and travel on. Why do I love them so much? Because ladybug pest control is very effective in my organic garden.
LADY BUGS ( Coccinellidae )
Coccinellidae are a family of small beetles ranging in colours from yellow ,orange or red with black dots on their wing covers (often 7 dots on each side). Also known as “ladybird, “ladybug” and “Marybeetle” they are known to be a beneficial insect as they diet on aphids, mites and scale insects.
HOW TO ATTRACT LADYBUGS for Organic Ladybug Pest Control
When the weather becomes unfavourable and days become shorter, ladybugs enter a stage of diapaus, or a state of dormancy. Most overwinter as adults by gathering on the South sides of trees and buildings, in old logs or under ground cover materials becoming active again in spring as days become longer. Don’t be in too big a hurry to totally clean up your garden in the fall. Leave some debris around for ladybugs to overwinter in.
Ladybug houses are now popular.The jury is still out on whether or not they work, but if you have one you will have greater success if you place it in a sheltered position. Their main predators are birds, wasps, dragonflies, frogs and spiders. You might also try placing it where you notice them naturally congregating in your garden.
Supply ladybugs with Pollen Plants
To attract ladybugs into your garden make sure they have a good supply of pollen plants. Plants such as calendula, chives, coreopsis, cosmos, dandelions, statice, yarrow, marigolds and scented geraniums are all favourites.
Supply ladybugs with Water
Place shallow bowls of water around your garden but make certain to refresh them regularly.
Garden organically. Get rid of all pesticides and insecticides if you want ladybugs to call your garden home. A healthy population of lady bugs in your garden will go a long way with helping you rid your plants of garden pests in a most environmentally friendly manner.
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