Don looked at a vegetable garden that is thriving without the use of toxic chemicals to control insect pests. Instead, a natural system of balance has been achieved by encouraging beneficial insects, such as ladybirds, to help keep pest insects at acceptable levels. Most ladybirds and their larvae eat aphids, scales and mealybugs. Ladybirds can be found in every state of Australia and they are most active in early spring. Other beneficial insects include hover flies and their larvae, lacewings, assassin bugs and parasitic wasps. By choosing not to use toxic sprays you can safeguard your own health and make a difference to the health of the environment.
Note: not all ladybirds are beneficial. ladybirds (Henosepilachna spp.) with 26-28 spots are leaf eaters and can damage the leaves of vegetables, particularly pumpkins, zucchini and rockmelons.