“Entomophobia—the fear of insects.”
Indeed, insects are one of the most feared creatures in the world today. This is understandable considering many of them look creepy. As such, it is not surprising to know that millions of people these days have either an aversion towards them or suffer from entomophobia.
However, no matter how scary or bizarre their appearances are, insects are valuable and beneficial to the environment. To be more specific, there are certain types of insects that can help improve the productivity and vitality of your garden. Their contribution to your garden’s vigor—especially in the aspect of pest control—is so important that they are considered by many organic gardeners as essential “gifts for the garden”.
Ground beetles are very effective in helping control the amount of pests in your garden. They eat cutworms, slugs, and root maggots. Some type of ground beetles will even search for foliage destroying caterpillars on plant stems.
Also called hover flies, these insects provide two useful benefits—pest control and pollination. Syrphid flies look like bees. The only difference is that they have two wings instead of four. Both young and old syrphid flies eat aphids, but only the adults are capable of pollination.
Damsel bugs eat a number of different garden nuisances such as thrips, aphids, caterpillars, leafhoppers, and so much more. Their natural color, which is brown, gives them a camouflage advantage in hunting their prey. Damsel bugs look similar to assassin bugs. The only difference is that the former insect is a lot smaller.
Another beneficial insect, which serves as an effective gardening tool are lady beetles. These beetles are prized among many gardeners since they eat almost all types of pests such as mites, mealybugs, aphids, thrips, and so much more.
How to Attract Beneficial Insects
There are various ways wherein you can attract helpful insects to live in your garden. The first one is to grow the right plants that naturally attract them. Parsley, coriander, dandelion, marigold, spearmint, and poached eggplant are some of the plants that you can grow in your garden to help attract beneficial insects.
Another method to attract helpful insects is to stop using insecticides. Selective insecticides may seem fit for pest control; however, what they do is rob the good insects of their food. What you should do, instead, is to let Nature and time do their work. Deciding not to use insecticides and rely solely on beneficial insects for pest control may lead to an increase in the number of bad insects living in your garden. However, this will benefit you in the long run since the good insects will have an abundant supply of food.
Lastly, you can buy supportive insects and release them into your garden. Helpful insects such as the lady beetle and ground beetle can be bought as either eggs or adults and are available via mail. They usually cost around $5 or more.
Now who says insects are only creepy and scary? They are beneficial to the environment and to your garden too. By applying the three methods of attracting the beneficial insects mentioned above, you sure are on your way towards achieving a thriving and winning organic garden. Learn more about various gardening gifts, tools, tips, and techniques by browsing this website further.