So i have aphids, yeehaaa(!)
I did have an army of Ladybirds/Ladybugs in spring as there were heaps of them around the garden but as we got in to summer they just vanished for some reason.
Living in Scotland my weather varies as you can imagine! Thus i take my 14 plants in and out of the house a lot so of course the Ladybird/bug with wings can fly away at any time BUT their larvae can't so they stick to the plants they were introduced to.
I done the soapy water in a spray bottle, wiping the leaves down with kitchen roll routine a few times but they just keep coming back & 14 plants is a lot of time to do that so i thought i would catch more Ladybirds/bugs but for some reason they have vanished over summer.
I decided to look further online for a solution to my aphid problem;my dad suggested Basil which i am also growing and has been next to 3 of the plants that are the most infested. I then found in my search people selling live Ladybugs/birds. Again i didn't feel like paying for a solution that could fly away or would have my plants miss out on the valuable days of sunshine rays that can last days then vanish for a week or longer!!
I then saw that the vendor offered the larvae that can't fly and are native to the UK to also help with the Harlequin problem which eat our native bugs. I am very in to this idea of helping boost our native bugs so i went for it! 50 of the British Adalia bipunctata ladybird larvae (Two spot) for £12.75 or deals if you buy more.
Honestly i was there for hours with a magnifying glass and tweezers sorting through the shredded paper in the wee container. A few brave larvae were up for exploring as soon as the little box was opened and crawled out on to my hand lol. They were nice and easy to get on to a few plants but then there were the ones that had grown to like their home they were delivered in lol They were the ones that made me sit for hours and mean hours until i found every single one of them. I found roughly 40 of my 50. There could be some that are in a state of change still as there are little black dots that could be them in the tub. So i didn't throw out the box and am instead keeping an eye on my box just in case some do change in to larvae i can identify, but even if 10 didn't make it, it was not from lack of trying. I completely believe that the vendor will have added 50+ to the box and they gave it 1st class delivery so that they get the quickest delivery they can so they are not sitting in a van for days. The delivery was really fast. It showed me just how fast items can really be if other vendors were honest about their dispatch dates on e-bay because i have had in the past problems with vendors saying they dispatched on the date of purchase with 1st class and the item taking more than a week to get here. This took 2 days after purchase to get here.
Communication with the vendor has been good so far to me when i am asking questions. I have still been seeing them on the plants a night after and even when i had fully grown Ladybirds/bugs i at times thought they had all flown out a window to find i had still 6 or 7 a day or 2 later so they will be harder to find than adults but i know they are there since i have been seeing some.
And the best thing about this solution, NO PESTICIDES!!! I would hate to have to use chemicals etc on my plants
There are still aphids but i don't expect them to have cleared the entire plant in one night alone lol.
Anyway i enjoy just looking for them and realized they patrol exactly like they do as adults I can't wait to witness them munching on some aphids. Be careful when getting them out the box, some are so small if i didn't have the magnifying glass i would have thrown a few aside thinking they were something else!
They have other options such as selling them in their hundreds with release bags that allow you to release them in outdoor bushes and trees etc
So if you are in the UK and in the same kind of situation instead of reaching for chemicals you could help our native bugs reclaim our gardens! They also will pupate in to adults so once they have fed on all the aphids you could set them free once they are adults or keep them to repeat the process of them laying more larvae.
Here is the link. I hope someone gets use of it They sell other garden stuff too including adult Ladybirds/bugs.
And here is their main page