In my last update, I talked about what a big pain the aphids had been for my garden and how I wanted to see if I could use an organic solution to fix the problem.
Ladybugs are known as “soldier bugs” because they eat aphids and other annoying insects like mites and white flies. So… i thought, let’s give this a try!
I ordered 1500 ladybugs off Amazon and they came in a package like this:
Inside the box: Detailed instructions, ladybug nectar, and ladybugs contained in a mesh bag, just as advertised.
After doing a little research, I quickly learned that the release process needed to be calculated and well thought out. Here’s what I learned and the steps I took to try to make the release effective:
1) I let them hang out in the fridge for a few days in order to start the hibernation process. If you release them immediately, apparently they will just fly away!
2) I waited until dusk, watered my plants down thoroughly, and sprayed the nectar provided over the plants and soil around them in order to provide an attractive place for the to want to stay and hang out.
3) I released the bugs at the base of the plants most affected by the aphids. Most of the ladybugs went crazy and ran around everywhere. But after a few minutes, they settled down and started drinking the water droplets. They must have been hungry/thristy!
The real question after all this was…. did they stick around?
I was super excited because I walked outside the next morning and found quite a few hanging out still. In fact, a few of them found the place so great they decided to try to reproduce haha! (That’s a good sign)
About a week after release, I haven’t seen as many hanging out. Not sure if they hide out during the daytime, or if they ran out of food. Either way though… the aphids are nowhere to be seen and my plants are looking great!
During my research, I found this video from Growingyourgreens.com to be super helpful.
Thanks for stopping by to read this…. May we continue to look at the world through “child-like” lens of wonder, finding joy in the little gifts from God.