Beneficial bugs are our friends. It is truly a beautiful site to watch a ladybug devour aphids like crispy potato chips. There are a variety of good bugs that I recommend attracting to your backyard garden. They are a safe and entertaining alternative to pesticides. Weather your pleasure is vegetables or roses, designating a portion of your yard to the habitat of beneficial bugs should be high on your priority list.
Here are just a few of the great types of beneficial bugs and the habitats they enjoy.
Mason bees are fantastic pollinators that occupy the former homes of carpenter bees, wood boring beetles, and hollowed out twigs. You can also buy pre-made mason bee homes at http://www.highcountrygardens.com/
Praying mantis’ are the ninjas of the insect world. They feed upon insects and are beautiful creatures to watch in action. Praying mantis’ love local flowers, so plant what grows well in your area to attract these wonderful insects.
Assassin bugs are another excellent example of beneficial bugs. They too love native plants, mine live in the lantanas and chocolate flowers (yes, they do smell just like a chocolate bar). These little guys have fantastic proboscis which they stab other bugs with. It is a fight to the end, but the assassin bug always comes out on top.
Dragonflies are an excellent form of mosquito control. Any creature that eats mosquitoes is high on my list of favorites. Dragonflies need a fresh source of water such as a pond or stream. Since we live in the desert Southwest, pond and streams are rare finds, but the neighborhood swimming pool seem to be a good source. These little beauties also enjoy the bamboo stakes that we use as supports for tomatoes and vine plants.
There are a multitude of beneficial bugs in your area, just do a little research on how to attract and keep these little gems in your neighborhood. You will be amazed at what a true friend they can be to you and your garden.