Tuesday, May 22, 2012

Lady Bugs

posted by JP

Lady bugs are so awesome.

A few months back, when I was researching how to produce a more bio-dynamic vineyard, I discovered how amazing lady bugs are.  Lady bugs eat all kinds of pests like aphids,

white flies,

spider mites,

scale insects,


and other soft bodied bugs. After researching this further, I estimated that I needed a gallon of lady bugs to keep down the levels of pests in our 5-acre vineyard.

Lady bugs are a farmer's best asset and cheaper than pest control sprays. Releasing lady bugs is like a bug investment. Instead of pesticide sprays that kill every kind of bug, we are encouraging our lady bug populations to grow, which should decrease our bad bug populations. We will see if this works, but with a little prayer and luck I am hoping things will go our way. 

Now I know your next question is A) How did you find these lady bugs? B) How did you get them to your house? The answer to both of these questions is Google Shopper and UPS. Using the Google Shopper tool I found a company called Peaceful Farm Supply in Grass Valley, CA. This company was great because they promptly followed up the online purchase with an actual person to person phone call to confirm shipment date and time. I love how you can buy baby chicks, fertilized eggs and yes, even lady bugs, through the world wide web.

The lady bugs came in a box with instructions to place them in the fridge. Lady bugs can live for months in hibernation. Hibernation happens with the temperature is between 40 and 60 degrees. Editor's Note:  It kind of freaks Beck out to have a huge box of lady bugs in the refrigerator.

The best time of day to release them is early in the morning or in the evening. During these times the lady bugs are looking for shelter and will have the best chance to find residence as appose to flying away.

We are building our dream of bringing together a community of bugs, plants, animals and people to create a sustainable farm called This Vine Life. We'l see if it works!

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