How to Identify and Remove Garden Pests

Garden Pests

Garden insects and pests can often be difficult to identify and sometimes they aren’t noticed until it is too late. Being able to identify them and the damage they are doing to your garden will go a long way to keeping your backyard healthy and looking beautiful.


These tiny little pests are green, pear-shaped and have two little tubes sticking out the back of their abdomen. They can be found on most garden plants however are commonly seen on flowers, fruits and shade trees.

To remove these pests, wash your plants with a strong spray of water or for more severe cases, use a hot pepper or garlic repellent spray.

Cabbage Maggot

These maggots, unsurprisingly, are found on all plants related to the cabbage family. The insects tunnel in through the plants roots which either kill the plant immediately or provide a clear channel for diseases to enter through.

To prevent and remove these pests apply floating row covers and mound wood ashes around the stems.


Caterpillars can more often than not be easily seen on any affected plants. Should you not be able to see the insect itself, they leave very distinct holes in the leaves of the plants. Some may even dig into fruits.

To prevent and remove caterpillars, encourage predators like spiders and birds that will eat them as well as covering your plants with floating row covers.

Azalea Lace Bug

These tiny, black pests are active in the spring months. They hide underneath leaves and suck at the sap which will leave a white or silver mottling on top of the leaf. To get rid of these pests spray the affected plants with a broad-spectrum insecticide on both sides of the leaves and repeat after 5 days.

Bronze Orange Bug

These bugs favour citrus trees and can do serious damage. These insects are often referred to as stink bugs because when they are alerted will spray a bad smelling chemical. Their larvae are round and laid on the underside of leaves.

The insects suck the sap which causes shoots and leaves to die. They can be treated with Confidor or simply spray on a diluted detergent.


These are small reddish-brown pests that move through the mulch and leaf-litter in your garden. They regularly feed on fruit and vegetables. There are insecticides that can be bought to kill these bugs or ‘Beat-a-Bug’ can be used as an organic alternative.