Millions, if not billions of dollars have been spent on creating pest-resistant plants, and RoundUp chemicals have been spread over our country faster than a California wildfire. The thing is, not all bugs are pests. Some of them are really beneficial, and they keep nature’s ecosystem humming. We’ve been nuking ‘pests’ with glyphosate and other herbicides or pesticides to the tune of 200 million pounds annually on our yards, parks, and farms for the last decade or so, but we’ve killed off ‘good’ or beneficial bugs in the process, while also creating superbugs that can no longer be tamed.
Once you get all the synthetic, poisonous crud out of your garden, farm, or lawn, then the balance of nature can give you an impeccable lawn or a garden your friends will drool over. Even larger farms can benefit from allowing beneficial bugs to be part of their overall ecosystem.
Also, planting a few things that beneficial bugs like to dine on, and offering them as ‘sacrificial’ plants can also create a whole host of good bugs that will eat ‘bad’ bugs and not the rest of your crops. Planting dill, fennel or Queen Anne’s Lace, for example, will not only give you some great herbs and gorgeous flowers, but also attract beneficial bugs.
Here are some beneficial bugs that you may not have realized help your garden to grow without the use of pesticides and herbicides:
1. Tachinid Flies – They eat caterpillar, beetle, and fly larvae that will later dine on your vegetables, fruits, and their leaves. If you plant lemon balm, parsley and chamomile, you can both enjoy them yourself as medicinal herbs, and also attract this special fly.
2. Robber Flies – They like to dine on grasshoppers, wasps, and other non-beneficial flies. Robber flies like mint, and why not – so do we! Mint protects against cancer and radiation.
3. Pirate Bugs – Since these beneficial bugs help to control aphids, thrips, scales, and whiteflies, they work to protect your treasure, not steal it. They especially like daisies and sunflowers, if you want to attract them.
4. Lady Bugs – I have a personal affection for lady bugs since one lady completely devoured a host of aphids that were trying to eat my organic avocado plant. These little beauty’s can be more beneficial than you know.
5. Lacewings – Lacewings like to dine on scale, aphids, mites, and a bunch of other soft-bodied insects. To attract Lacewings, you can plant another set of medicinal plants including dill, yarrow, tansy, Cosmos, and angelica.
While Monsanto, Dow, BASF, and other biotech companies treat the planet like a used up dame and throw illegal money at politicians to retain control, we still need organic, healthful food that is not flooded with pesticides. There are many towns and cities that have taken matters into their own hands, rogue planting gardens in front of police stations and even cemeteries. You too can learn how to grow your own, organic, non-GMO food, but it starts with a simple concept – allowing nature’s ecosystem to do what it does best – grow plants.
If you are an organic gardener and know of other beneficial bugs and how to attract them, please comment below.
Christina Sarich is a humanitarian and freelance writer helping you to Wake up Your Sleepy Little Head, and See the Big Picture. Her blog is Yoga for the New World. Her latest book is Pharma Sutra: Healing the Body And Mind Through the Art of Yoga.