Keeping up the health of a lawn is not a solely human endeavor. Nature also helps out through the ecosystem of insects that live in a given geographic area. While pests may pose big problems for lawns throughout Maryland, plenty of beneficial insects reduce any damage through eating them. Make your task of caring for your lawn easier by recruiting these beneficial insects.
1. Lady Bugs
Lady bugs, otherwise known as Lady Beetles, are pretty to look at and fantastic for getting rid of aphids, mites, and soft-bodied pests in general. Plants that they pollinate include flowers like coreopsis, geraniums, cosmos, and angelica. They also like the pollen from many herbs including cilantro, chives, carraway, dill, and fennel.
2. Ground Beetles
Ground beetles are not one species of beetle, but refer to the many kinds found in Maryland that kill typical lawn pests like snails, slugs, and others, and are generally beneficial to the ecosystem. The variety is full of different shapes and colors.
3. Honey Bees
Honey bees are not carnivorous, but are necessary for the reproduction of all types of plants and crops. To encourage bees to come to your garden, install native plants, provide water, and make sure your garden will always have at least one plant species in bloom.
4. Damsel Bugs
Damsel bugs, also covering a category rather than one species, are general predatory true bugs. They are characterized by a smooth, elongated body that can be teardrop-shaped. They eat caterpillar eggs, leafhoppers, fleahoppers, and mites. According to the Maryland Department of Natural Resources, damsel bugs are attracted to clover, which adds nitrogen to soil.
Although just looking at an eight-legged anthropod can cause many people to get squeamish, these creatures are your friends when it comes to maintaining a beautiful lawn and landscape. They can typically survive in your landscape on their own.
Lacewings are mostly green but also can be brown, and have, as the name implies, lace-like wings. They are excellent for getting rid of aphids, thrips, small caterpillars, and other small pests. They are also available for purchase.
7. Assassin Bugs
Over 160 species of assassin bugs exist in North America. Diligent consumers of garden pests, they patiently stalk their prey or dart out as one passes by. Larger species will attack humans if they feel threatened. Wheel bugs, elongated assassin bugs, and spined assassin bugs are common in Maryland.
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