Garden Pest Control – Beneficial Birds, Bees, and Bugs

Bees help pollinate your crops, and birds and certain bugs feed on other bugs that would otherwise eat your crops, so you want a bird-, bee-, and beneficial-bug-friendly garden. These helpers will not completely get rid of garden pests, but they will enhance your food security by preventing a full-blown infestation from occurring.

Ladybugs, lacewings, and their respective larvae will devour aphids and other soft-bodied insects that would otherwise eat your crops. You will receive the ladybugs in adult form, and lacewings in egg form. Just make sure you have aphids present when you release your helper bugs – they will need something to eat right away. You don’t want them flying off elsewhere in search of food. They won’t be back.

Spined soldier bugs will help control caterpillar and beetle larvae pests; they are also purchased in egg form. They are fairly common in the U.S., so it may not be necessary to buy them.

Trichogramma wasps control a number of worms and caterpillars by invading pest eggs with wasp larvae. These particular wasps are not a threat to humans, so you don’t have to worry about being stung. They are also fairly common in the U.S. and might not necessarily have to be purchased.

Nematodes are very, very small worms that reside in the soil – some are helpful and some are not. The beneficial nematodes will help control the population of pests that live partly underground, such as cutworms, white grubs, and wireworms.

Gardener’s Supply Company sells a particularly useful combination of beneficial bugs through Amazon.Com. Click on the link to the left to purchase a package of lacewings, ladybugs, and nematodes.

You can also attract these garden helpers by making your garden a place where they want to go. Companion planting will certainly attract plenty of pest killers, as well as confuse and repel the pests themselves. For instance, French marigolds both repel whitefly pests and attract hoverflies whose larvae feed on aphids. Aromatic herbs will also repel certain pests while attracting bugs that you want.

Flowering plants provide nectar and pollen that will attract bees and other helper bugs. Bees and butterflies love lavender, and some of the larger lavender bushes (these things get huge!) provide shade and shelter as well for your helper bugs and even some smaller birds. Planting decorative perennial borders around your garden area will ensure that your garden helpers have both food and shelter year-round.

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To attract birds, put a birdbath in your garden and keep it filled with fresh water. If you want to do something more elaborate, construct a small pond – and keep it filled with fresh water as well. You don’t want to breed mosquitoes. Of course, if you care to provide a place for bats to nest, they will be more than happy to return the favor by feasting on those mosquitos.

Bat House

Bat House

Bats will eat a variety of small creatures from mosquitoes to mice. We have custom designed and hand crafted the bat house with a choice grade of cedar. Bats can eat up to 7000 mosquitoes in one night. Measures 16 1/2 in. H x 12 in. W.

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