Farmscaping: Plants for Beneficial Insects

Flowers That Attract Many Beneficial Insects
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Introduction

Using plants that attract beneficial insects is not difficult using a strategy called farmscaping.  Farmscaping is using plants that attract beneficial insects.  Therefore, they will beautify your garden. And landscape.  Consequently, keeping beneficial bugs.  Pesticides are a useful tool.  However, overuse causes pest insects to build resistance.  Moreover, destroying all beneficial insects

Using plants from the list below encourages biodiversity.  And healthy populations of beneficial garden insects. Acting as Mother Nature’s best defense against damaging pests.  In addition, Integrated Pest Management (IPM) and farming rely on using these plants.  Therefore, attract beneficial insects for gardens. As well as crop pests.

Farmscaping

“Farmsacaping” is a relatively new term.  Meaning: a farm ecological approach to pest management.  Particularly for insects.  The entomologist, Dr. Robert Bugg coined the term.  Defined as the “deliberate use of specific plants and landscaping techniques”.  Therefore, attracting and conserving beneficial insects. It’s arranging plants used for biodiversity of landscaping.  As well as economic purposes (cash crops).  In other words, plants used for food and habitat of beneficial insects.

Sometimes, farmscaping is broadened beyond growing insectary plants.  Also included are trap crops: i.e. plants attractive to the pest. Similarly, establishing adjacent to a cash crop.

Designate between 5 and 10 percent of your garden or farm to plants attracting beneficial insects.  If possible, plant for blooms year-round. Beneficial insects will not stay without food. Continuous bloom feature in farmscaping is necessary. Therefore, earning it’s nickname the “chocolate box ecology”.  Gardens or farms will be beautiful year-round with a variety of colorful blooms.  And humming insects.

The strategy farmscaping, keeps pest insects controlled.  Adding plants to attract beneficial insects.  Also, suppressing weeds.  And growing near desired plants, are not competing for space, light, and nutrients.

Farmscaping: Benefits/Locations

(1) Living mulches or traps near desired plants.

(2) Fence rows or borders.

(3) Island patches. 

4)  Occupying entire rows spaced at regular intervals.

5) Herbs/flowers inter-planted with vegetable plants or fruit trees.

Types of Beneficial Insects for Plants

There are three types of beneficial insects.  Pollinators, predators and parasites.

Pollinators, such as honeybees, fertilize flowers. They increase the productivity of food crops ranging from fruit to vegetables.

Predators, such as lady beetles and soldier bugs, consume pest insects as food.

Parasites use pests as nurseries for their young.  All three can be feeding on pests.  Or on flower pollen and nectar in a diversified garden.

Subsequently, in a diversified farmscape, all three above can feed on pests at the same time.  As well as flower pollen and nectar.  By knowing these good bugs, it’s easier to appreciate their work.  And understand why not to use broad-spectrum pesticides.

Using Pesticides

Pesticides, even organic ones, are not safe or healthy.  Keep and attract beneficial insects for plants is the most effective pest control.  Likewise, adding plants for beneficial insects from the list below to your garden or farm encourages biodiversity.  And healthy populations of beneficial garden insects.  Therefore, making Mother Nature’s best organic pest control.  Integrated Pest Management (IPM) for gardening and farming methods both rely on plants for beneficial insects.  Equally preying on garden pests.  Farming or gardening organically, build and keep attractants for beneficials.

In Conclusion

You have to help nature.  Add plants for beneficial insects. Along with water. Furthermore, helping nature makes your gardenning easier.  As well as safer.  Beneficial insects’ diet are pests ravaging your garden. They need plants for beneficial insects.  Beneficial predatory insects do not live on aphids alone. Also, needing other natural sources of food.  And shelter for their life cycle.  Likewise, making a backyard their permanent home.

Adding plants for beneficial insects encourages biodiversity. (See list below). And populations of many beneficial insects. It’s Mother Nature’s best defense against damaging pests. See our farmscaping in action at our annual lily festival!.

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Water Fountain: Attract many beneficial insects
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Plants Attracting Predatory Insects:

Lacewing

Achillea filipendulina — Fern-leaf yarrow.
Anethum graveolens — Dill.
Angelica gigas — Angelica.
Anthemis tinctoria — Golden marguerite.
Atriplex canescens — Four-wing saltbush.
Callirhoe involucrata — Purple poppy mallow.
Carum carvi — Caraway.
Coriandrum sativum — Coriander.
Cosmos bipinnatus — Cosmos white sensation.
Daucus carota — Queen Anne’s lace.
Foeniculum vulgare — Fennel.
Helianthus maximilianii — Prairie sunflower.
Tanacetum vulgare — Tansy.
Taraxacum officinale — Dandelion.

Ladybugs

Achillea filipendulina — Fern-leaf yarrow.
Achillea millefolium — Common yarrow.
Ajuga reptans — Carpet bugleweed.
Alyssum saxatilis — Basket of Gold.
Anethum graveolens — Dill.
Anthemis tinctoria — Golden marguerite.
Asclepias tuberosa — Butterfly weed.
Atriplex canescens — Four-wing saltbush.
Coriandrum sativum — Coriander.
Daucus carota — Queen Anne’s lace.
Eriogonum fasciculatum — CA Buckwheat.
Foeniculum vulgare — Fennel.
Helianthus maximilianii — Prairie sunflower.
Penstemon strictus — Rocky Mt. penstemon.
Potentilla recta ‘warrenii’ — Sulfur cinquefoil.
Potentilla villosa — Alpine cinquefoil.
Tagetes tenuifolia — Marigold “lemon gem”.
Tanacetum vulgare — Tansy.
Taraxacum officinale — Dandelion.
Veronica spicata — Spike speedwell.
Vicia villosa — Hairy vetch.

Hover Fly

Achillea filipendulina — Fern-leaf yarrow.
Achillea millefolium — Common yarrow.
Ajuga reptans — Carpet bugleweed.
Allium tanguticum — Lavender globe lily.
Alyssum saxatilis — Basket of Gold.
Anethum graveolens — DillAnthemis tinctoria — Golden marguerite.
Aster alpinus — Dwarf alpine aster.
Astrantia major — Masterwort.
Atriplex canescens — Four-wing saltbush.
Callirhoe involucrata — Purple poppy mallow.
Carum carvi — Caraway.
Chrysanthemum parthenium — Feverfew.
Coriandrum sativum — Coriander.
Cosmos bipinnatus — Cosmos white sensation.
Daucus carota — Queen Anne’s lace.
Eriogonum fasciculatum CA — Buckwheat.
Foeniculum vulgare — Fennel.
Lavandula angustifolia — English lavender.
Limnanthes douglasii — Poached egg plant.
Limonium latifolium — Statice.
Linaria vulgaris — Butter and eggs.
Lobelia erinus — Edging lobelia.
Lobularia maritima — Sweet alyssum white.
Melissa officinalis — Lemon balm.
Mentha pulegium — Pennyroyal.

Mentha spicata — Spearmint.
Monarda fistulosa — Wild bergamot.
Penstemon strictus — Rocky Mt. penstemon.
Petroselinum crispum — ParsleyPotentilla recta ‘warrenii’ — Sulfur cinquefoil.
Potentilla villosa — Alpine cinquefoil.
Rudbeckia fulgida — Gloriosa daisy.
Sedum kamtschaticum — Orange stonecrop.
Sedum spurium — Stonecrops.
Solidago virgaurea — Peter Pan goldenrod.
Stachys officinalis — Wood betony.
Tagetes tenuifolia — Marigold “lemon gem”.
Thymus serpylum coccineus — Crimson thyme.
Veronica spicata — Spike speedwell.
Zinnia elegans — Zinnia “liliput”.

Parasitic Mini-Wasps

Achillea filipendulina — Fern-leaf yarrow
Achillea millefolium — Common yarrow
Allium tanguticum — Lavender globe lily
Anethum graveolens — Dill
Anthemis tinctoria— Golden marguerite
Astrantia major — Masterwort
Callirhoe involucrata — Purple poppy mallow
Carum carvi — Caraway
Coriandrum sativum — Coriander
Cosmos bipinnatus — Cosmos white sensation
Daucus carota — Queen Anne’s lace
Foeniculum vulgare — Fennel
Limonium latifolium — Statice
Linaria vulgaris — Butter and eggs
Lobelia erinus — Edging lobelia
Lobularia maritima — Sweet alyssum – white
Melissa officinalis — Lemon balm
Mentha pulegium — Pennyroyal
Petroselinum crispum — Parsley
Potentilla recta ‘warrenii’ — Sulfur cinquefoil
Potentilla villosa — Alpine cinquefoil
Sedum kamtschaticum — Orange stonecrop
Tagetes tenuifolia — Marigold – lemon gem
Tanacetum vulgare — Tansy
Thymus serpylum coccineus — Crimson thyme
Zinnia elegans — Zinnia – ‘liliput’

Tachinid flies

Achillea filipendulina — Fern-leaf yarrow
Achillea millefolium — Common yarrow
Allium tanguticum — Lavender globe lily
Anethum graveolens — Dill
Anthemis tinctoria— Golden marguerite
Astrantia major — Masterwort
Callirhoe involucrata — Purple poppy mallow
Carum carvi — Caraway
Coriandrum sativum — Coriander
Cosmos bipinnatus — Cosmos white sensation
Daucus carota — Queen Anne’s lace
Foeniculum vulgare — Fennel
Limonium latifolium — Statice
Linaria vulgaris — Butter and eggs
Lobelia erinus — Edging lobelia
Lobularia maritima — Sweet alyssum – white
Melissa officinalis — Lemon balm
Mentha pulegium — Pennyroyal
Petroselinum crispum — Parsley
Potentilla recta ‘warrenii’ — Sulfur cinquefoil
Potentilla villosa — Alpine cinquefoil
Sedum kamtschaticum — Orange stonecrop
Tagetes tenuifolia — Marigold – lemon gem
Tanacetum vulgare — Tansy
Thymus serpylum coccineus — Crimson thyme
Zinnia elegans — Zinnia – ‘liliput’

Minute Pirate Bugs, Damsel Bugs Big Eyed Bugs:

Carum carvi — Caraway
Cosmos bipinnatus — Cosmos “white sensation”
Foeniculum vulgare — Fennel
Medicago sativa — Alfalfa
Mentha spicata — Spearmint
Solidago virgaurea — Peter Pan goldenrod
Tagetes tenuifolia — Marigold “lemon gem”

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