Wednesday, 15 July 2015

Balkan Ecology Project- Beneficial Bed

A beneficial bed is a unit that provides nectars for pollinators (way before the crops flower) and also some habitat for invertebrates. Importantly pest predators like Ichneumons, ladybirds and hoverflies (some species larvae eat aphids) are attracted to the plot. By including herbs within the beds, an element of food production is also present. The plants can also be used as mulch although some plants (ones with hollow stems) will remain through the winter for insect shelter. Larger pest predators like toads and lizards can also find habitat and some plants in the autumn provide seed/fruit for birds.
Plants within this bed at Plot 1 include Purple Loose-strife, Horse Mint, Lemon Balm, Lilac, Siberian Pea Tree, Fennel, Lavender, Chicory, Sedum, Comfrey, Forsythia, Grape, Erigeron, Liquorice, Hibiscus, Echinacea, Hops, Alium and Nigella. Wild plants are also tolerated including Nettles, Vetches, Bedstraw, Greater Celendine and Black Horehound.
For more on the plants in Plot 1 see HERE

Beneficial Bed
One of the best units in the garden for inverts. Here's a few of them. Help with specific id much appreciated.  Large Red-belted Clearwing ?
 Solitary Wasp
 Emerald sp?
 Mythropha sp?
 Eristalis sp?
 Soldier Beetles- these have glowing tips to the abdomen at night
 Longhorn Beetle

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