Not all crawling beetles are harmful to the garden; some like ladybirds are very beneficial. Ladybirds are organic farmer’s best friend. They help get rid of pests like aphids, mites, scales, and mealybugs, which cause damages, especially in vegetable gardens.
Ladybirds will not feed on your plants or damage them. They will not chase away other beneficial insects too. If there are no ladybugs in your garden, here are some of the plants you can grow to attract them.
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Dandelions have bright yellow flowers and a nice scent that will attract ladybirds to your garden. The flowers also have nectar that attracts bees.
The plant does not require much effort to grow and it can grow up to 12 inches. The plant is best grown from seeds. Some people perceive dandelion as an ordinary weed, while others use it as a source of food.
Ladybirds are usually attracted by the pungent smell of mint. The herbs thrive well in moist soils with excellent drainage. Grow mint in that shady spot of your garden where other crops won’t grow. If you plant them in full sun exposure, provide some shade, as too much sun will kill the plants. The herb has other uses too.
It is used as a herb, and for making different products such as sweets. In ancient times, a mint was used for treating various health conditions. Mint can easily take over your garden. However, that should not worry you. Pull them out in the areas you don’t want them to grow.
Garlic will attract ladybugs and other beneficial insects in your garden. Plant garlic on fertile, Well-drained soils since soils with poor drainage may make the plant develop root rot.
4 months after planting, garlic will be ready for harvest. It has a nice flavor and is used as a spice in preparing various dishes. Garlic also prevents flies and, mosquitoes from getting into your garden.
The nice scent of parsley will attract ladybirds in the garden. The herb is also used to make various delicacies.
The scent of dill will draw ladybirds to your garden. Many people use dill as a herb to make different dishes. Its nice flavor makes them ideal for making gourmet.
Growing dill is easy. Just scatter the seeds all over the garden and after some time, the seedlings will emerge. The plant is also hardy and will do well even on fertile or infertile soil.
Its sweet scent and bright colors attract ladybugs. The plants require at least 6 hours of sunlight exposure; don’t plant them ins shade.
The strong scent of cilantro attracts ladybirds in a garden. Cilantro also has other beneficial properties. They have antioxidants and are used in the treatment of insomnia and anxiety. Cilantro takes only 3-4 weeks to fully mature.
The herb is best grown from seeds and does not require special maintenance practices. Till the soil, add organic matter, and plant the seeds. Cut off the head when it starts developing flowers. This will encourage the plant to produce more leaves and become bushier.
The spicy aroma of marigold will attract ladybirds to your garden. Marigolds are easy to grow and will brighten up your garden all year long. There are available in many varieties and will grow in almost any soil type.
They are also tolerant even to the most unfavorable weather conditions. Add organic compost to the garden before planting marigold, to help them thrive. Grow them from seeds and watch them grow, with very little maintenance.
Chives do well in full sun, but will also tolerate partial shade to an extent. They produce pink flowers that emit scents that attract ladybugs and other beneficial insects.
Chive is also used in the kitchen for making various dishes. Grow chives from seedlings or seeds. The herb requires little maintenance.
10. Sweet Alyssum
Sweet alyssum has a mild fragrance that attracts ladybugs. It also attracts pollinators like bees and butterflies, which are very beneficial garden insects. They thrive in well-draining soils with high moisture retention capacity.
The plant is very hardy and will tolerate drought resiliently. Plant sweet alyssum from seed in areas with full sun exposure.
Are Ladybirds Good For The Garden?
Over the years, there have been several superstitions regarding ladybirds. Some people associate them with good luck. Others believe that if you kill a ladybird, bad luck will follow you.
A ladybug will eat up to 400 aphids before it matures fully. Before its life cycle is over, the garden friends will have consumed up to 5000 aphids. However, they will not survive in a garden where chemical pesticides have been used recently. The insects will not cause any harm to your plants or any other types of beneficial insects. There are several species of beneficial ladybirds. However, some species are harmful.
With ladybirds in your garden, you don’t have to spray chemical pesticides to get rid of harmful insects.
How Can You Know The Difference Between Good And Bad Ladybirds?
Good ladybirds will remain in the garden and eat the harmful pests. Bad ladybirds will feed on the harmful insects too but may find a way into your house. They produce a bad odor and may even bite human beings. The Asian lady beetle is the bad ladybird. However, you can easily identify it. It has an m- shaped mark on the top of its head. It also has darker spots than those of the harmless ladybirds. Some Asian ladybirds do not have any single spot.
They don’t like cold temperatures. That is why they get to the house to seek warmer conditions. They also leave yellow stains on surfaces. The harmful beetles also cause allergic reactions such as hay fever and asthma.
Frequently Asked Questions
Unfortunately, ladybirds too have enemies. Some birds like craws and martins may prey on them.
Do not use chemical pesticides in your garden. The pesticides may kill the beetles or make the, go away. Also, provide the ladybirds with water. Use water baths or water containers.
Ladybirds may be attracted by light and get in your house through cracks and other openings.
Use a vacuum to get rid of harmful ladybirds from your house. Vacuum regularly and dispose of them properly so that they won’t get back to the house.
Ladybirds will not feed on your plants. They act as predators and will only eat those pests that affect your plants.
Several species of ladybirds live for one year. Some species can live up to 3 years.