Dealing With Aphids and Hoping for Lady Bugs in the Spring Garden

Aphids in the garden and how to deal with them.

A while ago I had aphids on my lime tree. I simply sprayed them off and they went away.

Now I am dealing with aphids on my pepper plant and eggplant. I’m doing the same thing – spraying them off with water. Also I wipe them off with my fingers.  I never spray insecticides on anything in my yard.

But, the key here is to check for the presence of ladybugs – in all their life stages. I don’t want to get rid of those.  And, in order for ladybugs to choose your garden to lay her eggs, she wants to see some aphids for her children to eat.

So maybe I should be leaving the aphids there and see what happens?  A large aphid infestation can kill plants.  (Update: by May, every aphid was gone!)  Aphids suck the juice from the greenery. They excrete a sugary substance which then attracts ants, but ladybugs eat lots of aphids every day.

getting rid of aphids
Aphids on my pepper plant

These aphids were brown in color. Aphids can be many colors, such as green, black, brown, pink, yellow, white, and blue (really?) and even furry (wooly aphids).
The little buggers are even inside the white flowers on the pepper. And I recently purchased a hot pepper plant and noticed they were also on it.

aphids in pepper flower
Aphids inside pepper flower

Aphids in Their Many Colors

aphid colors
black aphids
green aphids
green aphids
pinkish red aphids
pink / red aphids
yellow aphids on lime tree
Yellow aphids on my Persian Lime tree
aphids on squash flower
Aphids on squash flower

Because I have a small garden with only one or two plants containing aphids, I can easily control them with a spray of water.  Or wait patiently for lady bugs to show up.

A natural way to destroy aphids is to have ladybugs eat them. Unfortunately the beautiful spotted ladies never seem to show up at the right time, or in large enough numbers.  Or could it be that the garden is not welcoming enough?  Or I am not patient enough!

black bug on pepper plant
Black bug on pepper plant could be ladybug larvae?  The clue: black bug with 6 legs and red to yellow markings, so I say “yes”

I will begin paying better attention to the eggs, bugs and pests in my garden.  In fact after writing this post, I went outside to check on my hibiscus.

Hibiscus plants are notorious for attracting aphids.  I figured there may be some and possibly some lady bugs or eggs.  Wow, was I in for a surprise when I saw my hibiscus infestation!

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