• Post Reply
  • Bookmark Topic Watch Topic
  • New Topic

Overwintering beneficial insects.

 
Marty Mitchell
Posts: 312
Location: Chesapeake, Virginia
8
bee dog fish forest garden fungi solar
  • Mark post as helpful
  • send pies
  • Quote
  • Report post to moderator
I was once considering making a "ladybug hotel" for my kids out next to the garden. Kind of like the solitary bee hotel.

Then this Past Spring... I noticed that the 5 large clumps of ornamental Japanese silver grass I have growing around my back yard had hoards of ladybugs come out of them. Hay is one of the main things ppl were stuffing into the ladybug hotels! lol

Why build the habitat when you can grow it?... and add property value at the same time!

In the next few weeks I plan on digging up one or two of the large clumps(base is only 1.5ft in diameter) of grass and dividing them.

I want one clump on each side of the garden... and a few here and there around my fruit trees... blackberries... grapes... etc.

Anyone else noticed this or heard of this before

Also, I notice that the grass does a great job of mulching out weeds around itself this time of year. Seems like a good thing to have around.



Thanks,
 
Matu Collins
Posts: 1969
Location: Southern New England, seaside, avg yearly rainfall 41.91 in, zone 6b
69
bee books chicken forest garden fungi trees
  • Mark post as helpful
  • send pies
  • Quote
  • Report post to moderator
If you've got the space, this is a great reason to have a zone 4 and 5 on your property. We have a meadow that we mow in a three year rotation. (so it's a zone 4, the zone that you mostly leave alone. Zone 5 you leave completely alone) It's divided into three sections and we mow one section each year. This leaves two sections for the insects to overwinter in. We have many praying mantis egg cases especially. We also have seen a marked increase in the diversity of spider species since we have been doing it this wa
20131207_095420.jpg
[Thumbnail for 20131207_095420.jpg]
this year's mowed meadow section
 
John Polk
master steward
Pie
Posts: 8015
Location: Currently in Lake Stevens, WA. Home in Spokane
269
  • Mark post as helpful
  • send pies
  • Quote
  • Report post to moderator
There are several seed houses that specialize in regional wild flower mixes.
If you find one for your region, scatter them about.
They provide food and habitat for all of the local bugs.
These same bugs will pollinate your plants in the spring/summer.

Makes nice 'eye candy' for you and the neighbors as well.

 
Marty Mitchell
Posts: 312
Location: Chesapeake, Virginia
8
bee dog fish forest garden fungi solar
  • Mark post as helpful
  • send pies
  • Quote
  • Report post to moderator
I would absolutly love to be able to have zones. However, i live on a 1/3 acre lot in the suburbs. So I have been basically planting larger items around the border of my property... with privacy and looks in mind along with sun.
My wife was against me planting an insectary next to the garden. So I instead planted a Butterfly Garden (same thing! Lol). I just planted so something good is blooming at all times. However, I did start doing some gorilla gardening this past fall. I had collected an entire mason jar of correander off of four cilantro plants. I threw half in a small and lightly shaded "wild" zone next to my shed. That cilantro attracted more beneficials than imaginalble. I will throw the other half of the jar this spring. If I can get it to grow there it would be awesome. I may plant some garlic chives there too. It is perennial and almost as good.
 
I agree. Here's the link: http://richsoil.com/cards
  • Post Reply
  • Bookmark Topic Watch Topic
  • New Topic