Sunday, May 9, 2010

Attack of the Ladybugs!

My last post was about aphids. I tried soapy water, and it seemed to mitigate them, but it also turned the leaves of my plants brown. Next plan up my sleeve: LADYBUGS!!!

I bought these ladybugs at the Armstrong Gardening Center in Carlsbad, CA. $8.99 for 1500 ladybugs! I walked around the entire store looking for them, only to find that they were placed in containers in the soda fridge! They come in this little pint-carton. If you weren't paying attention, you'd think this was ice cream, and you'd be in for a nice surprise! :)

The ladybugs are stored temporarily in the fridge because it slows down their movements, and I'm guessing makes them expend less energy, and hence won't die as quickly. When I got them home, I put them in my fridge as well, since it's recommended not to release them until early evening so they won't fly away immediately. Here the are in my fridge:

Once the sun went down, I went outside to release them. Here is my homemade video capturing all the fun!!

The next morning (yesterday) I went to check on them, and they were everywhere!! On the fence, on my plants, on the patio, in my shoes... overall a good thing since most of them were still there, but there was a bit of a "ladybug orgy" going on. Here's some "ladybug porn" for you sick-o's out there :P! (Sorry about the poor quality of the video)...

Hope they actually laid some eggs in my garden! A few more pictures.

Today, most of them seem to have flown off to other places. Guess that means I don't have that many bugs in my garden. I still see a few lingering around my pots and vegetables. I don't know if I would do this again unless I had a huge aphid infestation. But the nine bucks I spent was certainly worth a try, and was overall a fun experience.

Next: praying mantis egg sacks!


April said...

I remember one year in New Mexico our house (outside) and yard was covered in these little black bug things... and eventually I took some to my entomology professor who very quickly identified that our house had been plagued my massive numbers of ladybug larvae. We were like... oh. cool. So we had lots of ladybugs that year... no idea why. *shrug*

Guess that's just the plague you need.

John's Arts & Crafts said...

Great Blog & photos! Optium temp. for the Ladybug is 55degrees, that is what they keep them in the frig at that temp. New blog on the Hx. of the Ladybug:

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