With such a mild winter, garden pests will be out in full force this year. Some of you may have already noticed an early outbreak of aphids on your roses, tulips, ivies — you name it. Aphids are leaf-sucking insects that can do permanent damage to your plants, and, if left untreated, can kill them.
What is the best, most organic, and least invasive treatment for your garden when these pests invade?
Lady bugs were named by Catholic farmers who prayed to the Virgin Mary when pests attacked their crops in the middle ages. These colorful insects showed up and were thought to be a miracle. They are, in fact, a wonder of the insect world. They pray on garden pests without doing any environmental damage themselves. During their 3-6 week life cycle, they can feed on up to 5,000 aphids.
Lady bugs are quite crafty. Their red color signals to predators “I don’t taste good!” When threatened, the insects secrete “fake blood” from their leg joints that smells and tastes bad. They also “play dead” in sticky situations with birds and other predator insects.
Plus, if one lands on you, it’s good luck.
We sell refrigerated bags of these beneficial insects in our store. Take them home and sprinkle them near shrubs and plants where you have seen aphids, scale, or plant mites. They will eat up and move on with no residual effect to your garden.