Gardening

The ladybug, a gardener's helper


Beasts of God are formidable devourers of aphids, essential to gardeners.

Read also :

  • Fight against aphids
  • Fight against mealybugs
  • Fight against red spiders

Ladybug and treatment

In organic gardening, animals that promote a crop without causing damage are called "auxiliaries". Pollinators and predators are among them. It is in this second category that fall the 80 species of ladybugs present in France, identifiable according to their size, their color and the number of points present on their elytra, the front wings which cover the hind wings, which they use to fly. .

The most common is the seven-spotted ladybird, which is very common in vegetable gardens and around wild plants. The two-dot ladybug is seen near fruit trees and shrubs, the 14-dot yellow likes vegetables, while the 22-dot red is seen around wildflowers such as dandelions. Most species feed on aphids, but others prefer them mealybugs or mites.

Ladybug life cycle

Ladybugs live one to three years depending on the species. They reappear in the garden in spring, when temperatures exceed 12 ° C, after spending the winter in hibernation, hidden in the bark of trees, dead leaves, etc. The breeding and laying season takes place from April to Mall. The eggs - 500 to 1000 per ladybug - are laid on the plants, in small packages, in the middle of the aphid colonies. After a few days, they hatch to release morph larvae that consume up to 100 aphids per day! Three weeks later, the larva transforms into a pupa, metamorphosing a week later into a yellow ladybug, as the elytra take 24 hours to redden.

To have ladybugs in the garden, there is no need to buy them in a garden center *, you just need to cultivate without phyto-sanitary products and not to eradicate all the wild plants where aphids settle. Ladybugs will follow naturally.

* The Asian ladybugs which are generally sold there are among the invasive species.

To read : Ladybugs, primroses, chickadees ... nature at the service of the garden, Georges Chauvin and Denis Pépin, Terre Vivante editions.

L. H.

Video: Ladybug larvae eating aphidsTrisha ShireyCentral Texas Gardener (October 2020).