In part one of this series, lady beetles, green lacewings, black ground beetles and aphid midges were praised for their abilities to remove common garden pests. Organic farmers in particular should take note of these insect helpers because they can severely cut back on the amount of pesticides needed to keep a crop from being damaged. Even amateur gardeners can benefit from a knowledge of these "good bugs." Spraying chemicals on your garden might be a great way to kill harmful pests, but it could just as easily hurt the other, beneficial bugs as well.
Here are a few more insects to keep your eye out for:
The common earthworm might get overlooked in daily life, but gardeners should be very thankful for their presence. Earthworms are extremely beneficial to the soil. According to National Geographic, an earthworm distributes nutrients within the soil and decomposes fallen leaves and other plant debris. Even the tunnels they create can help aerate the soil. Seeing these crawling invertebrates in your garden is a very good sign of healthy soil.
The soldier beetle lives up to its name by hiding in ambush among pollen-producing plants. There it will wait until an unsuspecting insect comes along looking for nectar. The beetle will then leap from cover, attack, and eat its prey. According to Iowa State University, the soldier beetle likes to prey upon caterpillars and aphids. The beetle likes to live near goldenrod plants, so having a few in or near your garden is a good idea.
These species of tachinid flies like to feast on moths. To the untrained eye, these flies don't look much different from the common housefly. However, according to the University of California, tachinidae can be identified by the bristles that protrude from the abdomen. These creatures are worth having around, because they kill species of moths that can cause massive damage to crops and trees. They provide biological control that can pinpoint harmful species better than any pesticide could.
These species, and those included in part one, can be purchased online - which makes them a viable option for pest control. Organic farmers and gardeners should keep on the lookout for these beneficial insects and promote their continued existence.