July 6, 2022

Insectary Plant - noun

Definition: A type of plant introduced into the Forest Garden to attract beneficial insects that will help control pest populations.

Insectary Plants in the Forest Garden:

An effective way Forest Garden practitioners manage pest populations is through the introduction of specific plants that will produce or provide nectar, pollen, or a preferred habitat to attract beneficial insects. These insects will not only help to pollinate a Forest Garden, but some insects, like lady bugs, spiders and even some wasps, offer pest control through predation and parasitism.  

From flowers to herbs to grains, trees and shrubs, insectary plants come in many forms in a Forest Garden. Depending on the need, a Forest Garden practitioner could select an insectary plant as a cover crop, allowing them to flower just before planting higher value crops, or they could plant a strip of insectary plants in a part of their garden to make sure a particular cash crop will not be infested.  

Popular insectary plants include: 

  1. Buckwheat
  2. Dill 
  3. Mustard plants 
  4. Elderberry  

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