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Attracting Beneficial Insects

Predator insects offer a natural alternative to pesticides. The listed plants will help deter pests and attract natural predators. A mix of these plants provides habitat and alternative food sources many predators require. Predator insects and parasites remain on certain host plants so avoid pesticides. When your plantings mature you’ll be able to observe the “Good Guys’ at work.

Pest Insect & Predator

Pest Insect Predator Insect
Aphids Aphidius
Aphids Aphidoletes
Thrips, spidermites, fungus gnats Beneficial mites
Eggs of many pest insects Damsel bugs (Nabidae)
Whiteflies, aphids, thrip, spider mites Dicyphus
Slugs, small caterpillars and grubs Ground beetles
Grubs Spring Tiphia wasp
Aphids, mealybugs and others Hoverflies
Scale, aphids, mites, soft-bodied insects Lacewings
Aphids, mites Ladybugs
Thrips, aphids, mites, scales, whiteflies Pirate bugs
Caterpillars; beetle and fly larvae Tachinid flies
Whiteflies; moth, beetle and fly larvae Parasitic wasps

Plants that Attract Predator Insects

Predator Insect What to Plant
Lacewings, aphidius, ladybugs Achillea filipendulina
Hoverflies Alyssum
Ground beetles Amaranthus
Spring Tiphia wasp Peonies, firethorn, forsythia
Ichneumon wasp, ladybugs, lacewings Anethum graveolens (dill)
Lacewings Angelica gigas
Ladybugs, hoverflies Convolvulus minor
Hoverflies, parasitic wasps, lacewings Cosmos bipinnatus
Dicyphus Digitalis
Lacewings, ladybugs, hoverflies Daucus carota (Queen Anne’s lace)
Damsel bugs, ladybugs, lacewings Foeniculum vulgare (fennel)
Pirate bugs, beneficial mites Helianthus annulus
Hoverflies Iberis umbellata
Hoverflies, parasitic wasps Limonium latifolium (Statice)
Aphidius, aphidoletes, hoverflies Lupin
Parasitic wasps, tachinid flies Melissa officinalis (lemon balm)
Parasitic wasps, hoverflies, tachinid flies Petroselinum crispum (parsley)
Pirate bugs, beneficial mites Shasta daisy
Pirate bugs, aphidius Sunflowers
Ladybugs, lacewings Tanacetum vulgare (tansy)
Dicyphus Verbascum thaspus
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