Top 10 Beneficial Insects for the Garden

Top 10 beneficial insects and how to attract them to the garden.


The aphid midge is a beneficial insect in the garden.

Aphid Midge

The larvae of this tiny, long-legged fly feed on more than 60 species of aphids by paralyzing their prey with toxic saliva. Pollen plants will bring aphid midges to your garden.  

Photo credit: Whitney Cranshaw, Colorado State University,



Braconid wasps are beneficial insects in the garden.

Braconid Wasps

The adult female of the species injects its eggs into host insects. The larvae then feed inside their hosts, which include moth and beetle larvae and aphids. The host dies once the larvae have completed development. Grow nectar plants with small flowers, such as dill, parsley, wild carrot, and yarrow, to bring them to your garden.


The damsel bug is a beneficial insect in the garden.

Damsel Bugs

Damsel bugs feed on aphids, small caterpillars, leafhoppers, thrips, and other pesky pests. Collect damsel bugs from alfalfa fields, using a sweep net, and then release them around your site.

Photo credit: Frank Peairs, Colorado State University,