A garden can be a paradise for a wide variety of insects, some of which can be beneficial to your plants, while others can be harmful. In Australia, where the climate and environment are unique, there are many beneficial insects that can help keep your garden healthy and productive. Here are five beneficial insects you want to find in your garden.
Ladybugs, also known as ladybirds, are one of the most well-known beneficial insects in the garden. These small, brightly coloured beetles are natural predators of aphids, scale insects, and mealybugs, all of which can be harmful to plants. Ladybugs are easy to attract to your garden by planting nectar-rich flowers and providing them with shelter.
Lacewings are another beneficial insect that can help control pest populations in your garden. These delicate insects have long, thin wings and feed on aphids, mites, and other small insects. Lacewings are attracted to nectar-rich flowers and can be encouraged to stay in your garden by providing them with a habitat such as a bug hotel.
Hoverflies are often mistaken for bees or wasps due to their bright yellow and black markings, but they are actually harmless to humans and plants. Hoverflies are beneficial because their larvae feed on aphids, thrips, and other pests, while the adults feed on nectar and pollen from flowers. To attract hoverflies to your garden, plant a variety of flowers with different colours and shapes.
- Praying Mantis:
Praying mantis are a fascinating insect to have in your garden, not only because of their unique appearance but also because they are natural predators of a wide variety of garden pests. These carnivorous insects will feed on anything from aphids and caterpillars to grasshoppers and beetles. To attract praying mantis to your garden, provide them with plenty of shelter and a variety of prey.
- Ground Beetles:
Ground beetles are a group of insects that can be found in many gardens throughout Australia. These insects are known for their long, slender bodies and powerful jaws, which they use to feed on slugs, snails, and other garden pests. Ground beetles are attracted to areas with moist soil and plenty of organic matter, so be sure to keep your garden well-mulched to provide them with the habitat they need.
Attracting beneficial insects isn’t something that happens overnight. To make your garden their next residence you will need to plant a variety of flowering plants that bloom throughout the year for them to have a continued food source, create place for them to shelter and reproduce like small piles of leaves or logs, avoid using pesticides and do some companion planting with herbs like basil, dill and coriander.
Beneficial insects can be an important part of any garden ecosystem, helping to control pest populations and keep plants healthy. By creating a diverse and welcoming environment in your garden, you can attract a variety of beneficial insects and enjoy a more productive and beautiful garden.