Mar. 15 column

Here is a link to my column in today's edition of The Spokesman-Review: Welcoming good bugs will help oust pests.

Today's topic is about attracting beneficial insects to your garden. For years, I've prided myself on growing everything organically and when I occasionally have insect problems, one of the things I've used is an organic spray.

Well, after reading "Attracting Beneficial Bugs to Your Garden" by Jessica Walliser, I am completely rethinking my strategy. (note: you can read my review of her book on this blog)

Walliser explains that oftentimes beneficial insects are more affected by organic sprays, which in turn throws off the populations of good bugs vs. bad bugs. Moreover, if you knock off the good guys, other types of pest insects can have a population surge which is definitely what you don't want!

She recommends letting nature find its balance in your garden and attracting beneficial insects so they can help us deal with any pest insects that think they're going to munch on our plants. Fair enough.

I hope you'll find the column interesting. I've included a list of plants that Walliser recommends so you can plan ahead. I intend to dedicate more areas of my garden to these plants and will report back on occasion to let you know how it's going.