There are many pests that we don’t want in our garden. Snails, aphids, spider mites, these are just a few examples of pests that can kill even the most-cared for garden, leaving it looking like no one makes an effort.
We also don’t always want to spray pesticides and other chemicals to kill pests. Chemicals will not only kill the unwanted pests, but they will also kill the beneficial pests. In addition, chemicals can be harmful to you, your health, and your garden.
While there are plenty of pests we don’t want, there are some that are beneficial. Attracting beneficial insects to your garden will go a long way in maintaining your garden long term. Also, it’s an excellent way to save money.
What insects are good for your garden? Luckily, there are many.
Not only are ladybugs cute, but they prey on some of the nasty pests we don’t want. They will eat aphids, whiteflies, and potato beetles. Fun fact, ladybugs can eat more than 5,000 aphids in their lifetime. Take that, you nasty aphids!
To attract these polka-dotted insects, plant fill, dandelions, and fern-leaf yarrow.
These beetles aren’t as pretty as ladybugs, but they go after the pests that go after your vegetables and flowers. Ground beetles will prey on slugs, caterpillars, and cutworms.
To attract ground beetles, plant evening primrose, Amaranthus, and clover. These beetles are only active at night, so if you don’t see any during the day, come back after the sun goes down.
Minute pirate bugs
These insects are brown and black, and they will eat those pesky spider mites messing up your garden. They also go after aphids, thrips, and caterpillars.
To attract these insects with a fun name, plant caraway, fennel, and spearmint.
These cool-looking flying insects look a bit like grasshoppers with see-through wings. They love to eat mealybugs, whiteflies, and aphids.
To attract some green lacewings, plant dill, angelica, and coriander.
While you don’t want aphids, you do want aphid midges. These midges will attack over sixty types of aphid species.
To attract aphid midges to your garden, plant dill, and any plants with plenty of nectar and pollen.
These damsel bugs are not in distress! They love to prey on caterpillars, mites, aphids, and cabbage worms.
To attract damsels, plant some caraway, spearmint, and fennel.
These wasps may appear scary, but they’re super-beneficial. These wasps will kill hornworms by laying their eggs inside their caterpillar. They also pretty on aphids and caterpillars.
To attract braconid wasps, plant dill, lemon balm, and parsley.
You should know that biological control methods like using these beneficial insects will not produce immediate results. Be patient and be sure you provide a suitable habitat for the beneficial insects to coexist with your healthy garden.