Beneficial Bugs in a Bag

At Logee’s, we have turned our attention to using beneficial insects, or known in the industry as IPM (integrated pest management). Today’s post is about treating for Western Flower Thrip. Western Flower Thrip is a prevalent pest in most garden centers and seen on outdoor plants. We recently had an outbreak in our new 19,000 sq. foot production greenhouse and this is what we did.

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The home gardener can treat thrip, spider mite and white fly with predatory pests. I’m one of those gardeners that like convenience. For the past three years I’ve treated all my indoor plants with predatory insects and after two applications each year, I easily solve the problem.

Check out this website: A site for the home gardener called Rincon-Vitova Insectaries

The bugs for the home gardener come in tubes. Simply sprinkle the bugs, packing material and all on your indoor plant’s leaves. The bedding or sand-like substance in the tube is what carries the beneficials. It looks like sand on your leaves but is necessary so the beneficial insects can crawl out of their packing material and onto the leaves to find and consume the bad bugs.

HIbiscus leaf with sand-like material which houses the good bugs

Keep in mind, that these bugs are microscopic, only stay on the plants, will not crawl around in your house or on the furniture and in my opinion is easier than spraying. After several weeks, wipe off the sand-like material.



Filed under Alocasia Zebrina, Beneficial Bugs, Integrated Pest Management, philodendron 'autumn', variegated vanilla

5 responses to “Beneficial Bugs in a Bag

  1. Nancy Kruger

    I loved this and learned a whole lot. Does it work outside as well what a cool way to turn a pest into bug food. Do you sell for all areas or just new england.

    great writing really draws the eye, good balance of photos and paragraphs.

  2. Kyle

    Just a nit pick (pun intended), but the aforementioned description of the microscopic “bugs”, which are in the class of Insecta, might (pun again intended) be misleading to some readers. OK, so you’re using the term loosely to describe “creepy crawlies” – I get that. The mites you utilize are however in the class of arachnids, which are pretty different from insects when you get down to it. Of course, when one of either startles a person, the reaction is typically the same.

    Just thought I’d share. I get hung up on details sometimes, like…”is that a pelargonium or a geranium?”

  3. Thanks for the great tip for treating unwanted pests! I am always looking for plant care methods that are convenient and easy to maintain.


  4. James Norris

    I will be honest, my family and I gardened our whole lives, but I never tried using bugs in a bag. Interesting thought process. I always wanted to grow tropical plants from Florida but living in Idaho made it impossible to do. Thanks for sharing this article and the photos.

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