Sunday, January 30, 2011

A Cloud of Lacewings

Dear folks,

This morning I was out in the garden, giving my very thirsty plants a little drink, and a cloud of lacewings arose out of a blooming rosemary bush. Lacewings are one of the good guys in our organic gardens. They feed on aphids and other soft-bodied insects. They are like tiny little ephemeral fairies in the garden, with bright green bodies, about one-inch long, and with two pairs of lacey transparent wings.

Photo courtesy of TX AgriLife Extension Service (Texas A&M)

The larvae are called aphidlions and are not quite as attractive as the adults.

And the eggs look like tiny threads with white cotton balls on the end.

Photo courtesy

Other plants that attract lacewings (according to Wikipedia) are the calliopsis (coreopsis), cosmos, sunflowers and dandelions – and the herbs dill or angelica. It's a good idea to plant as many host plants as we can so that the beneficial insects have a place to live.

Lacewings float,
little green fairies--
chomp go the aphids.

Go plant a tree!

Happy trails,

bobbi c.

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