If you are building a new home or simply want to update your current home, start outside with curb appeal. Read more »
Here comes the bride — and the groom, the bridesmaids, and the groomsmen – plan ahead, practice a little, and then enjoy bring... Read more »
When you’re filling out your wish-list of wedding gifts, don’t forget to include supplies for the garden shed. With the right... Read more »
The first time you try our PowerGear2™ Pruner, you’ll be amazed — but it’s not magic, it’s gears. Our patented gear techno... Read more »
The first time you try our PowerGear2™ Hedge Shears, you’ll be amazed — but it’s not magic, it’s gears. Our patented gear techn... Read more »
The first time you try our PowerGear2™ Lopper, you’ll be amazed — but it’s not magic, it’s gears. Our patented-pending tec... Read more »
Making your own wedding invites and thank you cards is a delightful task when you a few versatile tools and simple techniques... Read more »
Nothing adds a special touch to a wedding like a handmade item. Read more »
Create a beautiful setting for your post-wedding brunch. Using these Fiskars tools will make the project even easier. Read more »
Perfect for a wide range of crafting and mixed media tasks, our Amplify® Mixed Media Shears sense blade separation and force th... Read more »
Our unique Tag Maker with Built-in Eyelet Setter features an innovative design that makes it easy to create tags perfect for gi... Read more »
Choose our low-maintenance Photo Bypass Paper Trimmer to trim large quantities of photos with speed and precision. An easy-to-u... Read more »
Give your small outdoor space a mini makeover using a few simple tools to complete these fabulous projects. Read more »
Window treatments can turn a room from drab to fab, but if you’re on a budget sometimes hand-me-down curtains will have to do,... Read more »
If you’re not ready to fully embrace the trend for bold 70’s prints in your clothing, why not reflect it with a gloriously lou... Read more »
Perfect for a wide range of sewing and quilting tasks, our Amplify® RazorEdge™ Fabric Shears sense blade separation and force t... Read more »
Perfect for users with larger hands or anyone who needs to make long cuts through fabric, our RazorEdge™ Fabric Shears feature... Read more »
Our Classic Stick Rotary Cutter with a 45 mm blade is ideal for crisp, controlled cuts on a wide variety of materials. A symmet... Read more »
Make clean up time a fun game for the kids! It becomes really easy for toddlers and preschoolers to match their toys to their... Read more »
Funny Face Magnet Gift Wrap is simple to make and quite literally gives each gift magnetic personality. Read more »
“Painting” with tissue paper is not only fun but beautiful! Read more »
Our Preschool Training Scissors features a special training lever that opens the blades after each cut, helping children learn... Read more »
Children love our Designer Non-stick Blunt-tip Kids Scissors for the colorful handle patterns that make cutting fun and the non... Read more »
Our Designer Non-stick Student Scissors are larger than our Kids Scissors but smaller than adult scissors, perfect for those ol... Read more »
The most common complaint I hear when traveling is about soil quality for growing veggies. It may be too sandy, full of clay... Read more »
Creating a customized look is easier than you think - even when it comes to sewing up larger items such as this duvet cover an... Read more »
Introduced to the world as a quality fabric scissors, the Original Orange-Handled Scissors redefined the standard for cutting p... Read more »
I was going to write an article all about how much I’m loving Fiskar’s new Easy Pour watering can - how the adjustable flow control makes it easy to apply water to my delicate Baby Blue Eyes flowers that always seem to get obliterated by the water flow from my other watering can. About how easy it was for my daughter to hoist a full load of water (2.6 gallons!) without complaining that it’s ‘too heavy’. About how nice the two handles are, making it a cinch to reach those awkward spots without straining my back.
So, I went out to my garden to photograph my daughter with an ‘action shot’ of the watering can, when she screamed, “ewwww…there’s bugs stuck all over my pants!”
End of photo shoot.
Upon closer inspection I saw the bugs – thousands of them. Thanks to the unusually cool temperatures we’ve experienced this spring, my garden is absolutely overrun with sticky icky aphids.
Did I panic? Did I run to grab the nearest chemicals to spray on them? No. Instead I took my daughter on an ‘Easter egg hunt’ of sorts to look for the good bugs that were (hopefully) descending on this smorgasbord of aphids.
Sure enough, we found what we were looking for – ladybugs! Ladybugs fall into the category of ‘Beneficial Insects’, meaning they’re the good bugs that eat the bad bugs. If I were to just grab the nearest ‘death in a spray bottle’, I’d not only kill the aphids but I’d kill the good bugs as well. Bad idea.
Did you know that less than 3% of the insects in the world are harmful? Most are beneficial and help control the bad bugs while pollinating flowers and improving your soil by decomposing organic matter.
Look a little closer and you might get lucky and find ladybug larvae. They look like orange and black alligators.
As we continued our hunt, we found a Soldier Beetle (the cool looking, rectangular black and orange bug) – another wonderful beneficial insect.
Between ladybugs and soldier beetles, I knew my aphid problem would be under control soon.
And if not, I could always squirt the heavily infested stems with a few strong blasts of water. Did you know that once aphids are knocked down to the ground they can’t climb back up? And if that doesn’t work, I could also use a home remedy of 2 tsp. of mild dish or laundry soap mixed with a squirt bottle filled with lukewarm water. Sprayed weekly this mixture causes the aphids to dehydrate by washing off their protective waxy coating.
One of my very favorite beneficial insects is the praying mantis. Unfortunately, we rarely see them in my area. However, a trip to the nursery is all we need since many sell praying mantis. Keep these little nests in a warm location in the house (in a plastic terrarium – not loose!) In a few weeks you’ll notice them bursting out of their cozy home.
Quickly put them outside, as they’re absolutely voracious when they emerge. If you can find an aphid-covered rosebush, or some other such ‘buffet’, they will start feasting immediately!
Praying mantis are somewhat territorial so you’ll most likely see the same one throughout the summer, hanging around its favorite plant. They quickly grow from this teeny-tiny size to a whopping 4 – 5 inches.
So next time you’re in the garden and you spot the ‘bad bugs’, take a moment to see if you can find the ‘good bugs’. They usually go hand in hand!