After work yesterday, I found no less than five species of insects with an active interest in my garden. It's quite the wild kingdom on my balcony; many species are fighting for survival. I will describe them only briefly, as I don't want to creep out my wife. I have not seen a single twiddlebug.
These guys are nice. They've been around for a couple weeks, pollinating the beautiful flowers on my basil, catnip, tomatoes and peppers. They are wasps that don't sting. They are a natural enemy of the *ugh* mealybug.
*Ugh*. I discovered this guy last night. My wonderful peppermint had its leaves coated, on the underside, with some kind of white and hairy larval forms. I found some information on alternative pest control. Apparently, both alcohol and soap can be used in solution to fight plant pests effectively. I filled an almost empty Febreeze spritzer with water, as Febreeze contains both alcohol and soap, and I washed the entire plant, leaf by leaf (I hope the plant survives). After reading more about these bastards, I realized that the waxy-shiny substance I saw on the leaves last week was not a normal part of the mint. Mealybugs secret a sweet honeydew.
They're barely visible, yet I hate them. I have two flower boxes growing grass. One of these boxes is flourishing, the other one is not. I investigated the sick grass and I saw an infestation.
In cleaning up the garden last night, I was heartened to find a ladybug. Defender of all that is good, and eater of aphids. It's not the brownish foreign invader look-alike, but rather the bright-red real deal. I think. I hope.
Ants aren't a problem unless they're in your home. We've had kind of an ant situation in our building for a while. So far, they've been a only a mild nuisance and have kept away from our kitchen. Seeing this new development, it's time to step up the battle.
Now they're in my garden. The ants have been enjoying a buffet of the finest honeydew secretions of both the aphids and the mealybugs. Ants are very industrious. They're not satisfied with picking up snacks to go. They actually farm the aphids. They provide shelter and protection from predators. It looks like they took up residence with the aphids in my grass box.
Seeing that the grass was almost dead and easy to grow from scratch, I thought I'd use a more certain strategy, rather than plant-safe. I took a look in our cleaning supply cabinet. I briefly considered using bleach, but I thought it might be too hard on the plastic. I decided on a bucket of hand soap and water. I just drowned the entire box of grass and sprayed everything that moved and the entire perimeter with my Febreeze mix.
And they're up to something on my blueberry bush. I gave that a good spray down.
I'll be watching them. I will not tolerate infestation. If I wanted to breed insects, I'd be keeping them on my desk in a thin clear-plastic box.
You're a sick, ignorant fool with an extremely warped sense of morality.
The plants and food on my porch and in my home are mine. The plants outside my home and porch are for the bugs. I put the plants on my porch where there was previously nothing, and the bugs are horning in on my action. Unfortunately, there is no reasoning with bugs.
Are you for or against killing animals? Are you for or against raising plants for food? Bugs are animals that will eat your plants. You have ideals that can't be defended. You can kill something and eat it, or kill nothing and starve. I'm sure you find it more spiritually satisfying to buy your organic veggies from the supermarket, where you never have to touch dirt or insect larvae.
How nice that you want to save the bugs and kill every human. I'm sure there's a great argument for the wholesale execution of people. Humans are equal to bugs. Humans kill bugs. Kill all humans. This big space-rock will feel much better by supporting warring factions of insects as opposed to humans. If you're looking for inter-species cruelty, try studying nature.
Co-existence between lifeforms isn't balanced. Every organism has one prime directive--to propagate its species. This is always at the expense of another species. Humans didn't invent the concept of defending turf, we're just better at it. You will find that extending mercy equally on every being is impossible. And you will also find that most other species are far less merciful than humans.
I have yet to hear of any other living creature on this planet that kills for sport, or for that matter, any living creature on this planet which kills for no comprehensible reason at all, and I highly, highly doubt that I ever will. I have a garden, and bugs live in it. I have a belief that my respect of their existence and not-entirely-understood purpose lends a harmoniousness with nature which results in a better fruit... certainly better tasting than your soapy mess.
I kill bugs to protect my food. When I don't, other bugs kill them. I, in a way that is similar to bugs, protect my territory.
You kill bugs to protect your garden, not your food. Your food is purchased in a grocery store. Your garden is for growing a relatively miniscule amount of edibles, and serves the purpose of "conversation starter"/"blog subject matter" far more than it would ever serve the purpose of "sustenance." This is true not only of the reality, but of the intent.
"When I don't, other bugs kill them."
Ah, yes, the tell-tale sign of one afflicted by the so-called "logic" of an American ideals system. I can think of a number of other things that will occur independent of your involvement, and am wondering if you would like me to list all of them so that you can see to it that they are all dealt with by your own hand previous to when a similar action would have taken place by the force of nature and/or fate?
The tomato came from a plastic bucket with dirt that was on my cement balcony built on land that used to be a vast field of bugs and tomato plants living in harmony.
I would like to know what brand of bug-safe tomatoes you eat. You seem to be able to grow fruit with the help of friendly bugs. I haven't found that "how-to-garden" guide you spoke about. Every single gardening resource I've found told me to murder my planetary co-habitors in cold-blood. Please direct me to the live and let live gardening website.
I apologize. I don't have the laser-like focus that you seem to posess and I get lost easily in your well-built pyramid of indesputible logic. Cut to the chase. What's your point?
"so-called 'logic' of an American ideals system"
Your liberal bullshit rhetoric has nothing to do with my garden. Reasoning that the "American ideals system" is the source of my garden crimes will not make anyone nicer to bugs, nor will it expidite the airplane boarding procedures for Muslims. It will not earn you any points here or bait a response. You can safely rant on such issues at the Democratic Underground.