Not all insects are bad to have around your plants. Unlike the mites and worms that can gnaw on leaves, stalks and stems, making your plants shrivel and die, others can actually help you. There are some bugs that eat the more hazardous pests, and others that create a beneficial environment for the plants. Knowing the difference between harmful and beneficial insects is a skill any serious gardener should have. Just having such information could save you hours of work - as well as provide some balance to the local ecosystem. Unfortunately, methods used to get rid of one bug can often affect a whole host of others that were doing no harm, so it's important to understand this before blanketing an area in pesticides.
The aphid midge resembles a cross between a mosquito and a fly. Unlike those two creatures, this one does not generally bother humans. They prefer to use their toxic saliva to incapacitate and eat smaller insects such as aphids. A population of the midges can keep aphids from chewing away at the plants in your garden. According to the University of California, organic farmers can even purchase colonies of the insect to distribute among their plants.
The black ground beetle usually roams around in the vicinity of plants looking for prey. According to the Fairfax County Public School system, these beetles like to eat caterpillars, worms, aphids, weevils, slugs and fly maggots. In general, they do not harm plants, so gardeners should welcome them to their vegetable patches. According to the source, these beetles originally come from Europe, which means they have few natural predators in the U.S. and Canada.
The green lacewing is a slender, green flying insect with near-transparent wings. Its appearance makes it very easy for it to blend in with plantlife. According to the University of California, the insect likes to prey upon such garden pests as thrips, mealybugs, mites and leafhoppers. Gardeners can purchase green lacewing eggs online and have them in time for the arrival of the spring season.
Not to be confused with the Asian lady beetle, which can be harmful to plants, the convergent lady beetle is fond of devouring aphids. Distributing a colony of lady beetles into a crop with severe aphid damage can be much more beneficial than spraying a pesticide.
Because of the high amount of traffic and the versatility of the facilities, pests are naturally attracted to long-term care institutions. Many nursing homes, rehabilitation centers and other care facilities include on-site kitchens and cafeterias as well as private rooms and common spaces. All of these places are susceptible to attracting pests because of the presence of food, water and viable habitats.
During the summer months, some people love to go camping with family and friends. Yet this fun trip can be ruined with a few unwanted visitors, most notably different types of bugs. Crawling spiders, hungry mosquitoes and buzzing flies can become annoying quickly. How can you avoid these pests when you're outdoors? Consider these tips to keep bugs out of your campsite.
Carpenter ants can chew through the strongest studs and stringers in a house as they hollow the wooden beams out for nesting. The resulting damage can weaken the home's structural support and require expensive repairs. Professional pest control workers can remove a colony of ants, but the best practice for homeowners is to learn the best ways to keep out an ant colony and prevent the problem before it begins.
As the weather cools, you'll probably see fewer pests than you did during the warmer months, but that doesn't mean they're all gone just yet. Some insects can actually come out in full force during the autumn, while others might seek refuge in your warm home. Here are some key tips to keep in mind as fall gets underway:
As the middle of summer approaches, you need to be vigilant about keeping your garden free of pests. Many insects breed during the summertime, which means they're on the lookout for great places to lay their eggs. For many bugs, that means near a source of food. In fact, some species of insects will lay their eggs inside budding vegetables and fruit so their larvae have something to eat as soon as they hatch. That's why you have to keep harmful bugs out without damaging the bugs that could help you, such as bumble bees.
You might have noticed that, with the exception of the kitchen, you find more pests in your bathroom than in the rest of your home. This is because insects and rodents see the bathroom as a convenient watering hole. Pests love leaky pipes and standing water because these offer them a hydrating oasis in the otherwise dry biome that is your house or apartment. And if your bathroom develops mold, all the better for pests, who may eat fungus or use it to lay their eggs.
The kitchen is largest gathering place for pests in a residential home. The reason is simple: pests can grab a bite to eat and take a sip of water while they're here. And when they find such a bountiful place, they will return home to their nests and report the finding - before you know it, your whole pantry is a buffet for ants! The problem could get even worse if a piece of food falls somewhere and begins to rot. Similarly, fruit and vegetables you bring into your home may be harboring unseen pests waiting to hatch.
In the summer months, people love to stock up on fresh fruits and vegetables. Some even venture to farmers markets where the food is cheaper. However, not only do fruits come home with you, fruit flies may too. Once they've gotten acclimated in your home, they might stay all summer. These pests breed quickly, and tend to spread through whatever food you've got around. They also are happy to join in on any meal you have, be it a sit-down dinner or a barbecue in your backyard. Worst of all, like other flies, they carry disease. Consider these tips on how to prevent fruit flies from coming home with you.