Instructables

Ladybug House (Updated)

Picture of Ladybug House (Updated)
My girlfriend and I have a vegetable garden, and we have succeeded thus far in making it chemical free, and as organic as possible. The only real problem we've encountered is our peppers and eggplants are getting eaten by aphids. Hopefully this will succeed in getting rid of them and other small insects that might be eating our plants.
 
Remove these adsRemove these ads by Signing Up

Step 1: Materials

Picture of Materials
I used 1x8s for the wood, some hinges and small screws.

Step 2: Design

Picture of Design
IMG_0357.JPG
IMG_0356.JPG
Not too complicated. It's basically a box. The sides have an angle on the top, and the bottom and top are longer than the sides. The front is the shortest piece as to allow a space on the top and bottom. The top is hinged to a short piece on the top back so it can be opened. Also, the back piece is taller so it can be attached to something.

Step 3: Attach to Pole

Picture of Attach to Pole
IMG_0359.JPG
Ladybug houses are supposed to be 1-3 feet from the ground. I used bamboo, because I already had some and just drilled a hole through the top of the house and through the bamboo. I used a bolt and nut to attach it. I cut the bottom at an angle so it will stick into the ground.

Step 4: UPDATE: Paint

Picture of UPDATE: Paint
IMG_0450.JPG
IMG_0455.JPG
My girlfriend and I just painted it for aesthetics and to help attract the lady bugs.

Step 5: Put it in Your Garden

Picture of Put it in Your Garden
1243839087.jpg
This should go in or near your vegetable garden.
I've read around online, and it says a tiny pool of water (as deep as half of a ladybug's height) with some leaves and twigs in or near the house will help attract them. You can also buy chemical attractant, or just buy the ladybugs themselves.
I plan to paint it before I put it out. Ladybugs are attracted to bright colors like green, blue and yellow, and to floral patterns.
I hope this helps someone with a similar pest problem. Thanks for reading!
stick04 years ago
question is is this helping the invasive non-native species or our age old almost extint native species?
I like the art work on the house but the design is not focused on the species, it leave a perch for bird some with eat ladybugs.  New blog giving more information on Ladybugs it called "Hx. of the Ladybug"
You've got to watch out for the ants as well, they'll protect the aphids..
I run a conventional orchard.. Troy is right about ants, they will even overwinter aphid eggs in their nests, bringing them out to start up their little farms, usually on lower leaves, in the spring. Aphid populations will explode as soon as juicy young green tips are available, the best thing you can do is search early on new growth, on the underside of leaves and then continue to knock back the population, which-ever method you use. if it gets established, the aphid population will curl up leaves and generally become more difficult to control.
A good name5 years ago
You know this reminds me of a story (true story)... I had been out in my garden, and I noticed a tiny bug struggling in the pond. I went up to it and saw it was a ladybug. I plucked it out of the pond, and put it on a bean plant leaf in the sun to let itself dry. After that, I got a ton of ladybugs coming to my garden... unfortunately though, they weren't very productive at aphid eating, as the aphids ended up destroying my corn crop...
I just had aphids move in on my tomatoes so I'll have to investigate this; I don't like to spray even if it's organic since it affects the plant's transpiration. I've been blasting them off with water in the meantime which seems more effective than I had expected. Nice instructable!
kcmessenger5 years ago
I beleive ladybugs are attracted to Marigolds also, I plant several near my gardens each year for aphids.
TimBTodd (author)  kcmessenger5 years ago
Good point, we have Marigolds in our garden as well.