The Walden Effect: Farming, simple living, permaculture, and invention.

Insects on the asparagus

Syrphid fly

Thick-headed FlyI've been dutifully plucking asparagus beetles and squashing eggs once a week, hoping that a predator will show up soon and take over.  By now, the eggs I missed have given way to plump larvae nibbling on asparagus fronds, so I was thrilled to suddenly notice half a dozen insects I'm unfamiliar with sharing the habitat.  Could this be my long-awaited pest control?

Sadly, no.  The new bugs are just some of the seemingly unlimited supply of different native pollinators in our garden, these attracted to the just opened asparagus blooms.  The scary looking guy at the top of the page is a Syrphid Fly (aka Hover Fly) that feeds on nectar as an adult and on moist organic debris as a larva.  The strange percher on the right is a Thick-headed Fly taking a break from a snack of nectar before she lays her eggs on a bumblebee or wasp in flight.

Learn to keep bugs at bayI'm still rooting for a predacious wasp, but until I see one I'll keep squashing beetle larvae.

Our homemade chicken waterer never spills or fills with poop.

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About us: Anna Hess and Mark Hamilton spent over a decade living self-sufficiently in the mountains of Virginia before moving north to start over from scratch in the foothills of Ohio. They've experimented with permaculture, no-till gardening, trailersteading, home-based microbusinesses and much more, writing about their adventures in both blogs and books.

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