How to attract good bugs to my garden?

by Michelle Lasley

Michelle Lasley is a mother, wife in Pacific Northwest learning to balance green dreams with budget realities.

June 5, 2008

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Categories: The Balancing Act

Integrated Pest Management (IPM) is probably what you could learn about next. I will refer you (again) to those fabulous articles by the University of Wisconsin, this one titled Managing Leaves & Yard Trimmings. I would have included a PDF, but unfortunately a few hard drive crashes and no frequent back ups have erased it from my computer. But, here’s the link again: http://clean-water.uwex.edu/pubs/pdf/home.managlt.pdf. Obviously, I am going to tell you to “Say NO to Chemicals!” You want things like worms and ladybugs. Ladybugs, for instance, eat aphids which eat roses. I don’t know all the ins and outs of IPM, but that’s where I’d direct you next to learn more about what you want to see in your yard and what you don’t.

I kept getting stuck on shade, without re-referencing your email, as your question and thinking about what to plant in the shade. I don’t have an answer for that, but that’s not really what you asked. Shade is good because it helps with energy costs, especially around the home. Having plants work together is good… but anyway. That’s not specific, only generalities.

Back to what you want to see in your yard. I just did a Google search for “good bugs in Michigan” and this is the first thing that popped up from the Michigan Department of Agriculture: http://www.michigan.gov/mda/0,1607,7-125-1566_1733_22582_22592-69349–,00.html. They list three bugs you want to see: Praying Mantis, Ladybug, and Honeybee.

Now – maybe the BEST site is this from MSU: http://nativeplants.msu.edu/results.htm. This is a chart of the type of native plant and how good they are at attracting bees.

1 Comment

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    Whoever owns this blog, I would like to say that he has a great idea of choosing a topic.

    Reply

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