Saturday, March 31, 2012

Good Bugs? {Did You Know Tuesdays}

YES! There is such thing as good bugs.

   To name just a few there are lady bugs, bees, the tachinid fly, minute pirate bug, hoverfly, parasitic wasp, big-eyed bug, and lacewigs.
   You know, some bugs are good for the garden, and some bugs are bad for it.
        1. Some "good" bugs help pollinate your plants. Without pollination, you won't get as many fruit on your plants, or worse, not any at all. Most people realize that especially bees play a major part in this. Take good care of your bees. Their numbers have been dropping drastically in the past few years. Some believe this is due to GMO soybean crops.

        3. Some "good" bugs eat weeds. Isn't that nifty? Many "bad" bugs too though, so it can be hard to tell which one is which.
       2. Some "good" bugs' diets consist of the bad bugs. It's nature's cycle. They lay their eggs on the "bad" bugs who are trying to take bites out of your veggies and the "good" bugs eat those nasty boogers when they hatch.

   "That's all great," you may be saying. "But how do I get these bugs to come hang out in my garden?" Glad you asked!!! I'll tell you.
   ~First of all you want some dead leaves or a near-by compost pile for them to live in.
   ~Second of all they need some "bad" bugs to eat.
   ~Thirdly you'll want to grow some plants that attract the "good" bugs. There are quite a few of them, but I'll try to list just a couple that seem more common. Alfalfa, anise hyssop, caraway, clover, dandelion, dill, dwarf alpine aster, English lavendar, fennel, gloriosa daisy, goldenrod, hairy vetch, lemon balm, marigold, parsley, Queen Anne's lace, spearmint, sweet alyssum, tansy, yarrow, and zinia. Phew! And that's only a few! Each plant attracts their personal variety of beneficial insects, so I'll leave you now to do your research.
P.S. Yes, I know. It's not Tuesday. I haven't been able to post on blogger for days for some weird reason. Even now I'm wondering if it's going to work this time....
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