I’m sure you’ve heard that ladybugs are good for your garden, but have you ever wondered why? Today I’m going to share a little personal story about ladybugs, and why you need ladybugs in the garden too!
This year was the second year I’ve grown corn. I noticed bugs really like corn a lot. They’re full of little tiny bugs, and also these little black and orange worm like bugs. One day I just kept seeing those black and orange worm like bugs and decided to look up what they were. To my surprise they were baby ladybugs! I was very happy to find out that I had an abundance of ladybugs without even having to purchase any!
Ladybugs are so good for your garden. They keep many bad bugs out of your garden. Whenever I find aphids I go and grab a ladybug off of my corn, and they eat them up. It’s amazing these tiny cute little bugs can eat up to 5,000 aphids in their life time! That’s just one ladybug!
Here is a picture of a little ladybug I found and put on my pea plants that had an infestation of aphids on them. I placed it on the plants the evening before and the next morning to my surprise the same ladybug was still there! I know this because the ladybug I put on my pea plant the night before had one orange wing and one red wing. I was actually lucky enough to get pictures of this ladybug eating it’s breakfast!
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Here is a little information on the lifecycle of a ladybug
Before ladybug’s mature, they look like this. To me they look like little strange black and orange worms with legs.. 😂
This stage is the larva stage. These are the strange looking worm like bugs I kept seeing all over my garden. I have safely held them without getting bitten, and transferred them to the problem areas of my garden. Even as a baby they feed on other small bugs that are a threat to your garden. They are in this stage for about 20 to 30 days.
The next stage is the pupal stage. That little orange ball pictured below is the pupal. The larva sticks itself to a leaf and transforms into an adult ladybug. This process can take anywhere from three days to two weeks.
Below is the well known adult ladybug. Did you know these little beetles can live up to a year? That’s a long time! It would be really beneficial to have these bugs in your garden especially with such a long life span. Think of how many bad bugs they would be eating off of your plants! They are well worth keeping around. Below is a short video of that ladybug eating it breakfast!
How to attract ladybugs to your garden!
If you would like to have more ladybugs in your garden, you can try attracting more by planting fragrant flowers such as marigolds in your garden. You can also plant fragrant herbs such as dill or cilantro.
Another way to attract them is to not use pesticide. Pesticide is going to make the bad bugs and good bugs leave. Plus pesticide is so bad for you. Please try every natural route possible before you use pesticides. Remember, even some natural routes can hurt the good bugs as well so do careful research before choosing something to repel or kill bugs.
One more way is by planting corn. I have so many ladybugs now because of my small patch of corn. I’m going to guess it’s because of all the tiny bugs on the leaves attracting them making it a good habitat for them. Corn has really been helpful with attracting ladybugs.
You can also purchase ladybugs here. If you choose this route make sure before you release them you spray your garden down well with the hose so the buggies don’t get dehydrated. Also let them loose in your garden in the evening so they are less likely to fly away.
Ladybugs are great helpers in the garden. If you see any of the bugs in the pictures above, don’t squish them! They will be so beneficial to you and your plants!