FREQUENTLY ASKED QUESTIONS

What pesticides can I spray while using beneficial insects? Is there anything that I can use that is compatible with predatory insects?

Usually, the pesticide you currently use for pest protection will also harm beneficial insects, if they come in contact. Many growers' goal with beneficial insects is to stop pesticide application completely. Our application plan for you includes the option for a total cessation of pesticide applications, a cleaning of all surfaces and then introduction of beneficial insects. No pesticides at all should be applied after predatory insects are introduced.

If the beneficial insects have been applied to your garden and you still want to be even more proactive, you can use a foliar spray of just water. The water does three helpful things. First, the spray itself can knock adult pests off the leaves and onto the ground. Second, the misted water increases the local humidity which slows down pests because they prefer dry environments. Finally, the sprayed water is helpful to the plants themselves.  The water encourages the plants to thrive and increase their own defenses. Please be cautious: you would not want to use a water spray if you are also dealing with powdery mildew or another mold issue.


Can I refrigerate the beneficial insects I receive for future use? Do I need to apply them right away?

It is important to remember that you are using a perishable product. To be most effective in your crop for control, apply the beneficial insects right away, the same day you receive them. Do not refrigerate them at all. If you absolutely must wait a day until application, place the container in a room that is less than 60F and dark, but not the refrigerator. There may be some degradation of the product but it is better than nothing, if you really must wait a day.


When is my order going to be delivered, and how?

Each week we ship Mondays and Wednesdays and so your delivery will arrive either Tuesday or Thursday. After we have reviewed your order, you will receive an email confirming your delivery date. We ship everything so that it arrives the next day, which helps to ensure that you receive healthy and viable product.


How long will it take to start seeing results?

This is one of the most challenging questions to answers because of all the potential variables in your garden.  It is safest to say that it will take roughly 7 to 14 days before you will begin seeing the effects of an interrupted lifecycle for your problem pests. 

The time it takes to impact the problem pest population varies depending on variables such as, the present size of the pest population, how many insects you have applied to the infected area, and whether there are any residual pesticides. 

Chemical pesticide use right before using beneficial insects is not advisable. The pesticide residue left on the plants and other surfaces can deter or kill your newly applied beneficial insects.

Finally, the beneficial insects need some time to go through their lifecycle and reproduce as well.  Each generation needs to eat, mate and reproduce in order to expand their coverage area and density. So, again, let’s just say it takes roughly 7 to 14 days for the newly added insects to impact the pest population so you see results. That is why we encourage two or three aggressive applications to start, rather than continually playing catch up.


What should my expectations be moving into this alternative method of management?

First off, it is helpful to remember that using beneficial insects is not a new technique. While using beneficial insects may be new to cannabis production, using predatory insects has been common in commercial horticulture for decades.  Our founder, Shane Young, comes from that industry and uses these long practiced techniques.

As long as you come to the technique with an open mind, are ready to learn and are willing to commit to giving the insects the time they may need to start showing results, you should feel confident that your pests will become swiftly managed by predatory insects and all will be well. Prevention is always the most reliable way to go. The time to resolve a pest breakout must always be estimated on a case by case basis because of all your variables in your garden.

Depending on the shape your garden is in, there may be some bumps in the road as we manage the transition, but in the vast majority of cases, when using as directed, this is really pretty straight forward, and a reliable option. Again, using preventative techniques from the beginning, rather than a curative is always the best method for control


How can I help ensure success?

The best thing you can do is to work methodically in your garden and follow the application directions exactly.  If you have a clean grow, healthy roots, optimal watering and nutrient schedule, you have created a great environment for your plants to thrive with beneficial insects.

Approach your transition away from chemical pesticides with an open mind and be willing to communicate with us. 

If the beneficial insects have been applied to your garden and you still want to be even more proactive, you can use a foliar spray of just water. The water does three helpful things. First, the spray itself can knock adult pests off the leaves and onto the ground. Second, the misted water increases the local humidity which slows down pests because they prefer dry environments. Finally, the sprayed water is helpful to the plants themselves.  The water encourages the plants to thrive and increase their own defenses. Please cautious - You would not want to use a water spray if you are also dealing with powdery mildew or another mold issue.


I see that the beneficial insects are packaged different ways and with different carriers. Which is best for me?

The two kinds we carry travel in sterilized vermiculite or bean leaves. 

The vermiculite additive just gives the insects something inert to stand on in the packaging. It won’t harm your garden and is really just filler to help the insects travel and be applied. Only adults are shipped this way.

The bean leaf carrier is shipped with the whole life cycle of the predatory mites already in motion - eggs, nymphs and adults. These leaves are collected right off the breeding plant at the insectary and shipped to you.

Both are excellent options for insect control.

The sole negative perceived by some people is that a small number of two-spot spider mites are also included on the bean leaves so the beneficial insects can eat while traveling. Some growers are zero tolerant of any spider mite being in their garden and so we let you know. The bean leaves are incredible and an industry standard though so we don’t recommend that you get hung up on that aspect, and choose to focus more on the fact that you are receiving a living colony of predators to protect your garden.


Can you let me know what pesticides are compatible?

None. We recommend not using any chemicals or pesticides in your crop once you introduce beneficial insects. It not only stresses your plants, but it will likely kill the beneficial insects you just added. 

If the beneficial insects have been applied to your garden and you still want to be even more proactive, you can use a foliar spray of just water. The water does three helpful things. First, the spray itself can knock adult pests off the leaves and onto the ground. Second, the misted water increases the local humidity which slows down pests because they prefer dry environments. Finally, the sprayed water is helpful to the plants themselves which often get thirsty from pesticide application.  The water encourages the plants to thrive and increase their own defenses. You would not want to use a water spray if you are also dealing with powdery mildew or another mold issue.


If I apply these predatory mites as a preventative and there is no food for them to survive, how long will they last? Aren’t I just wasting money treating preventatively since there may not even be any pests for them to eat?

We cannot stress to you enough how important a preventative approach to natural pest management is. It not only protects your plant to let them grow and thrive without any intrusions, it will save you money in the long run from trying to correct a pest outbreak that would be a continuous fight.

Prevention is part of the mindset change that is needed when choosing this new pesticide-free path.  If your biggest problem is that you have no pests, that is a good position to be in.

Most species of predatory mites used in your garden will last two weeks without any food.