The Garden Guide

Book: The Principles of Landscape Gardening
Chapter: Chapter 1: Entomology as Applied to Gardens

Insect control in gardens

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1611. Insects are the most numerous, as well as the most destructive, foes to which gardens are exposed. There are so many species, and their devastations are so varied, that, without some acquaintance with their scientific classification, and a correct knowledge of their habits and economy, their operations can neither be understood nor effectually counteracted. It is, therefore, the duty, not only of the intelligent agriculturist, but also of the gardener, to acquire both these branches of information. The first may be learned from books; but the second can only be gained by attention to the insects themselves, to the particular changes they undergo, and to the effects they produce. The generality of gardeners are deplorably ignorant on this subject; and hence arises the misapplication of remedies, the consequent destruction of plants and fruits, and the persecution of birds, and even insects, that are beneficial to gardening operations. The scientific acquaintance with entomology that a gardener should acquire may be confined to a general knowledge of the changes which insects pass through, from the egg to the perfect state; the different appearances which the various tribes assume, before they reach their final developement; and the several orders or divisions under which they are then classed. He will thus be enabled to know whether any particular larva or grub belongs to a beetle, a moth, or a wingless insect. It will, therefore, be our object to make this knowledge attainable without much study; and to communicate it in popular language.