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Fruition Garden Journal

video tutorials, tried-and-true tips + our latest learnings to surround you with abundance all season long

Our Favorite Beneficial Insect: Have You Heard of the Lacewing?

Jul 20, 2018
 

Friends, I garden not only for the beauty and abundance, not just for the smell of fresh lavender or the satisfaction of good, hard work.

I garden to be in awe of the world.

Today, lacewings are the embodiment of such awe for me.

What is a lacewing?

Chrysopa carnea (there's a clue!) is one of our finest beneficial insects native to the Northeast, very likely the most voracious insect in your garden. For breakfast, lunch and dinner they dine on your aphids, thrips and cabbage looper caterpillars. 

Here are four reasons you want lacewings in your garden:

1. An Unmistakable Appetite for Aphids

Adult lacewings are darling with their sweet lime green bodies, sparkling gold compound eyes and dramatic, sweeping wings like exquisite, translucent stained glass. Adult lacewings feed on nectar, pollen and the honeydew of aphids, like ants.  

Lacewing adults are gorgeous as well as nocturnal, so they're rare to see. Photo courtesy of Wikipedia.

Their larvae,...

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The Truth About Praying Mantis (May Surprise You)

Jun 08, 2018
 

As a child and to this day, praying mantis delight me instantly when I find them in the garden. Their unlikely and adept bodies, their incredible adaptations & their uncanny camouflage are absolutely astonishing. I'll stop what I'm doing, every time, to watch them for minutes on end, spellbound by their captivating grace.

Can you find the praying mantis on the sage, beside Queen Sophia marigold, in front of Pancho?

When we rhapsodize poetic about beneficial insects, the charismatic praying mantis is often celebrated alongside ladybugs, bees and butterflies.

Friends, I love praying mantis.

And let's be clear.

Far from a pest insect, praying mantis (Mantis religiosa) is nonetheless at the bottom of the list of 'beneficial insects' in your garden.

Here are the three essential things to know about praying mantis:

1. Praying mantis are generalists.

When it comes time to eat, praying mantis are generalists. They'll voraciously...

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