Garden Insects or Pests

Garden insects are usually the first pests that you will notice in your garden. It’s just a fact that plants will attract insects.

These are some of the most common insects that infest and damage gardens. However, thanks to the commitment to watering daily, you have an excellent opportunity to look at your tree while you’re doing it, so you’re likely to spot problems before they became serious.

If you discover any evidence of insect or fungal attack, act at once.

Have the problem accurately diagnosed by an expert and seek the appropriate treatment. Wherever you live, there will be pests that the staff at your local garden centre is able to help identify. They will also recommend the most effective treatment.



Garden insects such as aphids are plump sap-suckers that extremely resilient and reproduce quickly so if you notice clumps of small bugs on the leaves or under the leaves of your plants, take action immediately.

The first signs of aphid infestation are distorted shoot tips that appear early summer. Other signs of aphid infestation include wilted or curling leaves, brittle stems, and reduced growth.

To battle aphids you can knock them off the leaves with a stream of water from the hose, or use a gloved hand to flick them to the ground.

If there is a real infestation and there are too many for you to get rid of with simple means, try spraying the plant with a solution of equal parts water and insecticidal soap that you can buy at a gardening supply store. Aphids are annoying but are not difficult to control.


Your kids might think that caterpillars are cute, but they are not harmless. One or two caterpillars can eat the leaves from an entire plant overnight. If you notice caterpillars on your plants or on the underside of the leaves of your plant you can brush them off. If garden insects returns often or if there are many of them in your garden and they are starting to do some serious damage to your plants then you need to get a bacterial spray with Bacilus thuringiensis (Bt) from the garden center that will keep them off your plants.


Leafhoppers are one of the most common if not the most common garden insects. How will you know if you have leafhoppers in your garden? You will see curled leaves with brown edges on all of your plants. Leafhoppers are small but you can still see them if you look closely. You can use an insecticidal soap to spot treat plants that have leafhoppers but if you have a serious infestation you may need something stronger to get rid of them like Pyrethrin.

Slugs and Snails


You will also probably find slugs and snails inhabiting your garden at some point. In small numbers, they won’t do that much damage to your garden but in large numbers they can create a lot of havoc.

The best way to get rid of slugs and snails is to sink containers of beer into the ground near the plants that have been damaged. Sounds crazy, but it works!

Spider Mites

These are minute creatures that densely colonize foliage, weaving almost imperceptible webs. They suck saps at the base of the leaves and can easily defoliate entire trees. However they are not too difficult to control.

Vine Weevils

These are the scourge of container gardeners, these spread fast. The adult, which lays hundreds of eggs, eat notches in the leaves of plants and the larvae have a voracious appetite for roots. One symptom for infestation is an inexplicable deterioration of the tree. Cure is difficult, as chemical treatments are not freely available to amateurs. Biological controls, like parasitic nematodes, are being marketed and seem effective, but prevention is the best policy. The adult weevil cannot fly, so placing grease bands around the legs of benches protects trees from attacks.

Other insects

A myriad tiny, harmless garden insects that sucks or burrow in leaves. Either ignore them or, if appearance is affected, seek advice at the local garden centre.

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