How to Identify Garden Pests

Commonly, when people first think of a garden pest, they immediately ponder ugly bugs and beetles that wreak havoc on the vegetation. In fact, there are numerous pests to be found in the insect family, but there are also small critters and fungi that gardeners must keep an eye on. The methods of pest control differ from pest to pest as well as gardener to gardener. Once you have identified the source of your garden trouble, it is best to find a way to rid the pests without use of chemicals that may poison the soil in which your plants are trying to grow. The following information is targeted towards identifying the four most commonly known garden pests.


Blight is a common problem that plagues gardeners and their precious bounty. Caused by a bacteria spread by rain drops as well as insects, it harbors in damp, humid weather. Much like bacterial infections in the human body, blight attacks the plant at the source of an injury on the plant's stem. Blight has a spotty appearance and will eventually appear to be dead spots on the leaf. If blight is left untreated, it will rapidly deplete the plant from its nutrients, extremely, causing the plant to die. Blight can be removed from the garden naturally by using copper.

Japanese Beetle

Japanese beetles will show no mercy when it comes to attacking a garden. They will chew on leaves and flowers until nothing is left. Japanese beetles are about an inch long and are actually very pretty with its iridescent dark green and brown shell. However, looks can certainly be deceiving when it comes to these damaging garden pests. To the Japanese beetle's dismay, there is one plant that they can not tolerate ingesting and that is the beautiful larkspur flower. Larkspur proves to be toxic to the Japanese beetle, so gardeners plagued with the pest should plant the flowers near the garden.


Gardeners around the world cringe at the mere mention of aphids. Also known as plant lice, aphids are commonly green in color and are less that an inch long. Despite their minuscule size, aphids are the most damaging causing garden pest. Aphids suck the nutrients out of the plant leaves until the leaves are wilted. While on the plant, aphids will leave behind a secret, which is a tell-tale sign of an aphid infestation. To quickly remove aphids from the garden, spray the plants with soapy water.


If a garden has vegetation, chances are it will be visited by area wildlife. The garden is an excellent location for the hungry animals to dine of free food. Deer, coyote, rabbits and birds are all common visitors to a garden. Fencing in the garden area is a way to keep out the larger animals, but it is not always a possible option. Hanging pie plates or chimes will spook the animals, but not rid them completely. Covering the vegetation with netting is a way to prevent sneaky paws from snatching the harvest. If wildlife problem persist, talk to the local animal control officer about setting live traps.