FREE DELIVERY FOR ALL ORDERS OVER £50 (Excluding Bumblebee Colony Orders & Product Subscriptions)

Ladybird larvae - Adalia bipunctata


What Are Aphids & How Do I Identify Them?

Aphid is a name for a large group of insects, many of which can cause serious damage to plants. They extract sap from plants causing a reduction in plant growth, reduced yields, and sometimes defoliation. Aphids can also secrete toxic substances into the plants. The Aphids take proteins from the sap and then excrete the excess sugar left in the sap back onto plants. This causes a sticky mess on the leaves, which black molds often grow on.

Aphids are soft bodied and often shed white skins onto leaves. Adult Aphids can be green, yellow, pink, black, grey or brown.

What Are Ladybird Larvae & How Can They Help?

Ladybird larvae are potent predators of Aphids (also known as Greenfly & Blackfly). This native Ladybird (Adalia bipunctata) is also known as the Two Spotted Ladybird and can consume up to 100 aphids each day.

The initial advantage of using Ladybird larvae is the sheer number of Aphids that will be consumed. Ladybird larvae, as they develop, will simply consume huge quantities of Aphids. The Ladybird larvae also roughly stay situated in the same area as to where they were released. This makes direct application onto infestations straightforward. Both Ladybird larvae, and Ladybird adults will feed on Aphids, which ensures you will benefit from having the Ladybirds on your plants for multiple stages of their life cycle.

Ladybird larvae will predominantly consume most species of Aphid, but will also feed on other soft-bodied pests such as Spider Mite and ThripWe would, however, advise use of more specific predators in tackling these pests. See our range of available Spider Mite and Thrip predators by clicking the links here.

Where Should I Apply Ladybird Larvae?

Ladybird larvae perform particularly well in greenhouses and polytunnels and will attack local infestations of pests. Our Adalia bipunctataLadybird larvae naturally like to inhabit trees and shrubs and so are also effective predators for use on aphids found on trees and shrubs like roses.

What Conditions Do Ladybird Larvae Require?

Ladybird larvae can be used in temperatures above 10℃ indoors or outdoors. The optimum temperature for utilising Ladybird larvae has been proven to be above 15℃. Ladybird larvae should only be introduced once pests are present.

We also advise making your garden as attractive as possible to Ladybirds. Try planting a range of pollen bearing plants, and provide overwintering sites for the ladybirds; such as log piles.

When Should I Apply Ladybird Larvae?

For indoor use of Ladybird Larvae: they should be released from March to September.

For outdoor use of Ladybird Larvae: they should be released from May to September.

How Do I Apply The Ladybird Larvae?

Each Ladybird larvae order is supplied with a cotton release bag. This bag should be utilised to release the Ladybird larvae in Aphid hotspots and is the ideal applicator when applying the larvae to trees or shrubs. 

Simply pour the Ladybird larvae into the cotton bag, hang it on the desired plant, and leave the bag open for the larvae to make their way out naturally. See our attached photo of a hanging cotton bag as a guide.

Alternatively, release the larvae over Aphid hotspots by cutting open the sachet and gently brushing the larvae out directly onto your plants.

If treating multiple areas of Aphid infestation you may wish to purchase additional cotton bags which you can find here.

Full instructions will be provided on delivery. 

How Many Ladybird Larvae Do I Need?

As a general guide we advise applying Ladybird larvae at a rate of 10-20 per square metre. This would equate to around 5 larvae per medium sized plant. For trees and shrubs 1-3 cotton bags per tree or shrub depending on the size of the tree and level of infestation.

What Is The Ladybird Life Cycle?

The larvae will feed for around three weeks before developing into adults. There are four larval stages before they pupate into adults. There can be about 3 generations a year and they overwinter as adults.

Chemical Pesticides 

Ladybird larvae are living creatures and can be affected by any chemical pesticides used within the previous few weeks. As a general guide, refrain from using Natural Pyrethrum or SB Plant Invigorator 2 days prior to use. Other chemical insecticides can have long lasting residues that could harm the Ladybird larvae and other predators for much longer periods. Refrain from using these products or check with Dragonfli for information on the effect of these products on our predators.

*Please order by 10am Tuesday for despatch the following Tuesday (we do order surplus stock so your order will be shipped sooner if possible).*

Customer Reviews

Based on 13 reviews Write a review

Customer Reviews

Based on 23 reviews
Victoria Hellyer
Very effective for greenfly control

The greenhouse greenfly have all disappeared - but so have the ladybird larvae. I hope they made it to adulthood and didn't starve to death because they'd munched all the aphids...

A great way to deal with greenhouse pests; great advice from the Dragonfli team and speedy delivery: thank you!

Mark randall Boardman

Do they eat eachother in transit?
I gave a five star rating or I couldn't submit, I could only see half a dozen but don't wish to leave a negative review, maybe Amazon wasn't the way to go?

Byebye greenfly

I get these every year and they are fantastic. Love watching the little critters set out to work, they do a terrific job of munching aphids. This year even came with some free popcorn which was a nice surprise, tasted a bit funny but free so can't complain! Will be back to buy more

Steven Duncan
Did the trick!

Cleared the greenfly from 3 rose bushes with 1 x 100 pack. All gone within days. Couldn’t ask for better


Really effective. Would appreciate a sticker on the package saying something about using or refrigerating immediately