Best place to buy ladybugs and best time?

donnaroeJune 3, 2014

I am pretty new to rose gardening. Where is the best and least expensive place to purchase lady bugs, and when is the optimal time to release them in Ohio? Also, if anyone knows what insects they eat, that would be helpful too. So far, I only have disease on a few of my hybrid teas. No bad insects yet, but I also really don't know what to look for.

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strawchicago(zone 5a)

Hi Donnaroe: Great question, I learned too as I looked up the info., from Buzzle "Lady bugs eat aphids. By the time a ladybug dies, it consumes about 5,000 aphids.

The other bugs that it eats are boll worm, broccoli worm, whitefly, mealybugs, armored scales, pit scales, mites, tomato horn worm, and cabbage moth. They also like to eat eggs of other insects like moths. They enjoy eating pollen and mildew. You may even find some species of ladybugs that eat mushrooms and other types of fungus.

There are over 5000 species of ladybugs on earth ... Its life span is about 3 to 6 weeks. In its short life span, one insect lays up to 1000 eggs. All ladybugs are born black. The larvae take only a week to develop into adults"

Read more at Buzzle:

See below link for the cheapest place to buy lady bugs from Amazon, 1,500 bugs for $15. It has the instruction on how to release them .. this place has the highest rating. Once you click on the below link, scroll ALL THE WAY down to see the 227 reviews. Ed in Amazon wrote this:

"1. If you release them in hot weather you will not see them EVER. These guys look for cool spots and will leave no matter what.
2. Sugar water does no good. If there is nothing for them to eat they are out of here.
3. If you have a aphid problem this is far the way to go.

*** From Strawberryhill: When we first moved to our alkaline clay we had tons of lady bugs. When I had the most perennial flowers, I had the most lady bugs. But pink yarrow and bee balm are too invasive, so I killed them. We went from tons of ladybugs, to very few. The reason? Lady bugs can hide under flowers, to keep cool and to avoid being eaten by birds. Once I killed the perennial flowers, I destroyed their shelter.

From eHow: Planting annuals and perennials to provide nectar for ladybugs will help make your garden an attractive place for both beneficial insects and humans. Choose annuals such as alyssum, baby's breath, calendula, cosmos, marigolds, sunflowers and zinnias, all of which grow easily from seed. Perennials such as bee balm (Monarda), goldenrod (Solidago) and candytuft (Iberis) also attract ladybugs.

Read more:

Here is a link that might be useful: Best place to buy lady bugs from Amazon

This post was edited by Strawberryhill on Tue, Jun 3, 14 at 9:44

    Bookmark   June 3, 2014 at 9:38AM
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It is nice to know about lady bugs, glad to know more, thank you very much Strawberryhill! I will get back to you, re: how and when to release lady bugs the effective way, let me visit Armstrong Garden Center soon.

    Bookmark   June 4, 2014 at 1:14AM
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Thanks for the info. I haven't tried releasing them in cold weather. In my experience, they never stick around. Lowes used to sell them here as adults in little bags. I tried releasing them at night after watering everything b/c they are less active then. They still fled.

I think it is best to plant host plants and attract them that way. Plus, you want the larvae which eats a lot more than adult lady bugs. I saw a couple of them this week checking out my common milkweed. I'm sure they laid their eggs there which works for me b/c they are planted very close to the roses. They also seem very fond of allysum.

    Bookmark   June 4, 2014 at 9:35AM
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