Green Lacewing are a natural method of pest control for your organic gardens. The larvae is a natural enemy of aphids, caterpillars, leaf-hoppers, mites, psyllids, thrips, white-flies and the eggs of other pests. The adult primarily feeds on nectar and pollen, in the larvae stage is when they are a natural predator of a large variety of garden pests.
Common throughout North America, the adult green lacewing is a small, soft- bodied insect that is a light green color, has antennae, big eyes, six legs with, and lace style wings. This beneficial insect is often mistaken for a dragonfly.
Eggs of this beneficial insect are whitish in color and can be found on the tips of thin vegetation. When adult lacewings lay their eggs, they are carefully keep separated from each other. If not keep separate, as the larvae emerge they will eat each other. These emerged larvae look like tiny caterpillars, and gray brown in color. At this stage of live is when they are in their beneficial stage. Very active in this stage of their life that lasts from two to four weeks, they can devour up to six hundred aphids.
Even though green lacewings are common throughout North America, they do have a preferred habitat. In their adult stage they feed on nectar and pollen from plants commonly found in gardens or agricultural fields, but do tend to prefer habitats where high humidity exists, making them a good choice as a beneficial insect in greenhouses and for irrigated crops, especially in the midwest and southeast.
Green Lacewings can be purchased by variety of commercial growers by both the home gardener or farmers for a natural method of pest control, and having a large variety of uses. There are several successful reported species of prey that the green lacewing has been used on and controlled, examples such as aphids, beetle larvae, eggs of leafhoppers, leafminers, long tailed mealybugs, moths, red mites, spider mites,thrips, and whiteflies to name a few.
The effectiveness of the green lacewing is best in humid areas, including greenhouses and interior gardens. They can also be used on a variety of crops, like apples, cotton, eggplant, peppers, potatoes, strawberries, sweet corn and tomatoes.
As with all beneficial insects, it is recommended to monitor the population. It is important that they have a sufficient source of food to be able to sustain a natural life cycle, if not you may need to supplement the food supply for the adults to stay around and maintain their population.
A environment friendly and healthy way of gardening. Organic Gardening is away of gardening in harmony with nature. Growing a healthy and productive crop in a way that is healthier for both you and the environment.