Discover what these garden pests are, where they’re commonly found, and why they can be harmful to your garden.
What Are Aphids?
Aphids are tiny, soft-bodied insects that commonly infest gardens and agricultural crops. They have pear-shaped bodies, long antennae, and long, thin legs. To eat, they feed on plant sap by piercing the plant tissue with their mouthparts. They reproduce quickly, and a small infestation can quickly turn into a large one.
In our class with Paul Gautschi, he teaches that aphids will show us when our plants are dehydrated. He teaches that they will never attack a hydrated plant. Learn more about Paul’s class and School of Traditional Skills here.
Where Are Aphids Found?
Aphids are found all over the world and can infest a wide variety of plants, including vegetables, fruit trees, ornamental plants, and houseplants. They tend to congregate on the undersides of leaves and near new growth. Some species of aphids are more specific to certain types of plants than others.
Are Aphids Bad For My Garden?
Aphids can be harmful to your garden if left unchecked. They can stunt plant growth, reduce crop yields, and spread viruses and diseases. In addition, they excrete a sticky substance called honeydew that can attract ants and other insects to your garden.
How Do I Prevent Or Get Rid Of Aphids Without Harming My Garden?
There are several ways to prevent or get rid of aphids without harming your garden. One method is to encourage natural predators of these garden pests, such as ladybugs, lacewings, and parasitic wasps, to live in your garden. You can also use homemade sprays made from garlic or neem oil to repel aphids. Additionally, you can prune infested plant parts, wash plants with a strong stream of water, or use sticky traps. It’s important to avoid using chemical pesticides, as they can harm beneficial insects and contaminate your soil.
If you’d like to learn more traditional skills such as raised garden beds, reclaiming pasture and more, visit our classes here.