In this updated second edition of her book first published in 2014, Jessica Walliser delves into the partnership of plants and insects in the garden ecosystem, describing how beneficial insects help to control pests and how plant diversity supports beneficials.
She explains the importance of understanding insects’ natural prey-predator cycle in the event of a pest outbreak, and profiles beneficial insects organized within eight groupings: true bugs, true flies, predatory beetles, parasitic wasps, dragonflies and damselflies, lacewings, mantids and arachnids. She follows with in-depth descriptions of more than 35 plants that afford food and habitat for beneficials and gives advice for designing insectary plantings to welcome beneficial insects, as well as companion planting strategies to deter pests.
The text is interspersed with interviews with scientists on topics ranging from exotic invasive insect species to landscape diversity and farmscaping, and supplemented with color photos and a quick-reference chart showing beneficial insects, the pests they consume and the plants that support them.
An enlightening read for gardeners or for anyone wishing to deepen their understanding of insect and plant diversity in garden ecosystems.
Softcover, 8" × 9", 208 pages, 2022.