Bugs…ughhhh bad bugs

Gardening is not without bugs – of many kinds.

Leaf-footed bug
Leaf-footed bug

As I have written before, I do like most bugs. I love butterflies, bees, assassin bugs, spiders, dragonflies and other pollinators.

However, I hate bad bugs who eat my plants and ruin things.

This year has been really bad for some bugs. Thanks 2020…

Specifically, as I have said before, the squash vine borer was HORRIBLE. I lost all my squash, zucchini and pumpkins to them. I also really hate grubs. Grubs are kind of my fault because they thrive in soil that isn’t the healthiest. They eat the roots of plants and then the plants slowly die.

Eggplant killed by a bug…I think.

If you’ve watched my journey of moving four beds that were troublemakers from one side of the “farm” to the other, you’ll know just how many grubs I had. Yuck yuck.

Some other evil bugs are squash bugs, aphids, leaf-footed bugs, cabbage worms, caterpillars, stink bugs, tomato hornworms, cucumber beetles and pickle worms. Each one has been an issue this year in some way.

Today, I also found ants farming aphids. Yes, you read that right. Apparently the aphids secrete a sweet liquid (ew!) and the ants love it. So, they literally take care of the aphids as the aphids eat the plant. #nothankyou.

Pumpkin vines killed by squash vine borer.

For the ants, I put DE on the plants when I know the bees aren’t out. For the squash bugs, grubs, cabbage worms, caterpillars and stink bugs, I just try to be diligent in finding them and squishing them. For the vine borer, I tried everything. This coming year I have some new traps to try and will also try to plant earlier before their season.

What kind of bugs are you dealing with this year? And how are you fixing the problem? Let me know in the comments below.


We’re not alone in the garden…

Green anole lizard sitting on Black Eyed Susan flowers

As a gardener, you’re never alone. Not only are there millions of gardeners and farmers worldwide from whom to learn, there are also the friends in the garden…all around you.

These are the pollinators and the garden helpers that make vegetables, fruits and flowers grow.

In our garden, we have many “friends” who help me out every day.

They include: jumping spiders, garden spiders, green anole lizards, snakes, dragonflies, green tree frogs, bullfrogs, honeybees, butterflies, bumble bees, wasps, assassin bugs, ants, skinks and many others.

We also have birds, squirrels and at least two bunnies (my husband named them Hazel and Holly.)

I love when the dragonflies follow you around when you’re watering. I love how the male anole always show off their throat fan. I love watching an assassin bug carry off its dinner – or a spider eat a pesky caterpillar in its web. I also love knowing they’re there – and that they’re happy living in the garden and helping me make it successful.

What garden friends do you have? Leave a comment below.