DIY Pest Control With Beneficial Insects

Quarantine all incoming plants

Quarantine all incoming plants in an isolated area and spray top to bottom with a broad-spectrum pesticide such as Bug Be Gone. Do not use any broad-spectrum pesticides in the general landscape.

Exceptions:

 A) Around houses and outbuildings.

B) Treating for ants with baits or granules applied to the ground (No Spray).If pest infestations occur:      

Inspect the area for beneficial insects

If they are present, allow time for the good bugs to do the work. This will boost the good bug population and eliminate problems in the future.

B) If no beneficial insects are present, high pressure water washing will remove many of the pests until the good bugs can increase their numbers.

For scale and sooty mold with no beneficial insects present, use the following spray or an insecticidal soap.

Fungicide Formula

1T Baking Soda

1T Dr. Bonner’s Peppermint Soap

2T Neem Oil

1 Gallon of water

Mix well and shake during application. Use once per week or as needed.

Survey your landscape for pollen producing plants

Most beneficial insects eat pollen and use such plants for shelter. Examples: Pentas, Vinca, Parsley, and Dill. Planting these plants in areas of your landscape will attract and keep the good bugs close.

Provide a fresh water source for birds and insects

Fresh water can be difficult to find so making it available will attract and keep insect eating birds and predatory insects in your area.

Hawaii State does not allow the importation of beneficial insects

Our island does have resident beneficial insects and they may be already in your landscape. If pesticides have been recently used, you may want to collect some to increase your population. Plumeria, oleander, and hibiscus are great host plants. Look on the underside of the leaves. Do not try to handle the insects but clip the entire leaf off and transport them in a lidded container to their new homes. Release them as soon as possible where food is present by clipping the leaves in their natural aspect with clothes pins onto existing plants.