How to Attract Ladybugs to Your Garden (and What Not To Do)

Ladybugs are an important ally to have in your garden as a form of biological pest control.

But unless you know how to attract ladybugs and keep them there, they'll likely fly away before they can make a dent in your aphid problem.

3 secrets to attracting ladybugs to your garden and getting them to stay:

Secret #1: Don’t get rid of all the bad bugs


While it might sound counterintuitive to let the bad bugs stay, a few here and there won’t do your plants any harm. Resist the urge to kill aphids as soon as you spot them on your plants.

If you must use any kind of chemical control, opt for insecticidal soap or horticultural oils, which do less damage to lady beetles.

Secret #2: Grow the right plants


They prefer small flowers, flat open petals, and umbellifers (umbrella- or disc-shaped flowers) that they can land on and crawl over easily.

Secret #3: Provide a safe habitat


You can influence ladybirds to stay in the area by providing a safe location for them to overwinter.

An example of this is an “insect hotel” or bug hotel, set up in an area that gets southern exposure for the best warmth.

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