Goings On

Berries and Zinnias Mean Japanese Beetle-Hunting Season

As you walk through the raspberry, blackberry and zinnia beds in the garden surrounding the Farm Stand, you may notice that some of the leaves look more like a skeletal shell than full leaves. This damage is caused by the forever-pesky pest: Japanese Beetles. If you have never seen one before, rest assured that you will soon!

So how do we handle pest insects like these without chemicals? This is going to sound barbaric, but we fill up jars and buckets with water and dish soap and knock the little buggers in. From the Farm Garden’s inception, this odd chore has attracted children and adults. It is a small volunteer job that anyone can do that helps us AND comes with the same immediate gratification as running the vacuum in a pet-friendly household, or mowing the lawn.

If you are interested in beetle hunting in the garden, with or without a farmer, stop by the Farm Stand during normal hours of operation for a quick training session. Here is a picture of the target:

And here are some pictures of other insects you may encounter in the garden that are good guys: “beneficial insects.”

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Willowsford Conservancy

41025 Willowsford Lane, Aldie, VA 20105

Phone: 571-440-2400


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23595 Founders Drive, Ashburn, VA 20148

Phone: 571-297-6900


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