What are beneficial insects?
Beneficial insects are those who either pollinate flowers or eat other insects that damage plants. If you spend time watching in the garden, you are likely to seem some of each. The traditional American way to deal with insects has been to spray them with some kind of insecticide, whether organic or inorganic. Unfortunately, this not only kills the harmful insects, it also kills the beneficial ones who might otherwise limit the number of harmful ones.
There are ways to attract and keep beneficial insects in our yards. It requires us to think differently about bugs in general. Beneficial insects will only be present if they have something to eat. If all of the "bad" bugs are gone, the beneficials will go away as well. What we are working towards is balance. The goal is to establish a friendly environment for the benefiicial insects so they stick around and keep our yards in balance.
In our research, we have noted there are five beneficials in particular who eat a majority of the types of harmful insects. We've also included ladybugs because they are such a popular beneficial. For more specific information on each one, click the name below: