Your garden, big or small, is an ecosystem where living things interact with each other and their environment. An ecosystem is healthy when the relationships – insect/ insect, plant/insect or living/non-living – within it function well. Formed over many thousands of years, these relationships provide services such as pollination, water filtration and biocontrol.
Biocontrol is the process of using living organisms to manage plant and animal pests with minimal negative consequences. Because spraying, whether organic or not, can lead to unhealthy soil and decreasing pollinator numbers. One of the best forms of biocontrol is to have predatory insects feed on unhelpful pests. To attract them, plant diversity is key; the more beneficial insect attracting plant species you have in your garden, the more beneficial insects you’ll have.
It’s okay to have a few pests in your garden – they will feed the beneficial bugs and help prevent an outbreak. Biocontrol is a terrific permaculture concept, making less work for you and more food to share.