Beneficial garden organisms

Page last updated: Thursday, 11 December 2014 - 10:07am

Please note: This content may be out of date and is currently under review.

Not all insects and pathogens are harmful to plants in the garden, many are beneficial and feed on other organisms and prevent them from becoming pests. 

This article describes some common beneficial organisms. Some are native and may already be present in your garden and some are commercially available.

About beneficial organisms

Beneficial organisms can be grouped into insects, pathogens and nematodes, and vertebrates. To encourage beneficial organisms into your garden it is important to minimise insecticide and herbicide use and provide natural habitats and shelter. For example, ponds can attract frogs while native trees and the absence of cats will encourage native birds and lizards.

Brown bobtail lizard.
Bobtail lizard.

Some plants are 'lures' for beneficial organisms, providing both shelter and food. These include plants in the parsley (Apiaceae), and sunflower or daisy families (Asteraceae). 

Plant herbs like parsley, dill, caraway and coriander and flowering dahlias, daisies, asters, cosmos, calendula, zinnia, sunflowers and native plants to attract birds and beneficial insects into your garden.