30 Days Wild – Day 25: Natural pest control

I have posted before about my relatively-recent status of reluctant rose owner. I like roses, but not all varieties are great for pollinators and I’ve heard that they can be a lot of work and need a lot of care.

I noticed earlier in the spring that one bush in particular had quite a lot of aphids… I looked online to see if aphids would do any real harm to the rose bush, but mostly just found advice about how to get rid of them and examples of the cosmetic damage a serious aphid-infestation can cause to rose bushes. Now, I do not like to use any sort of pesticides, insecticides, or really any sort of pest control at all, unless the pest in question will actually hurt or kill the plant. Aphids have a right to eat too, after all. So I thought I’d leave it a couple of days, keep my eye on the situation, and make a decision if the aphids started expanding their territory.

The next morning I noticed a couple of new ladybirds on the roses. By afternoon, there were several ladybirds, happily feasting, and after a couple days, the aphids were not a problem anymore.

I have seen that you can buy ladybirds to use as pest control in the garden, but my local ladybirds seemed to find their way here all on their own!

Ladybirds live for about a year on average, so gobbling up 5000 aphids is pretty impressive.