Butterflies aside, bugs and insects in the flower garden find a way to irritate me daily in warm weather. I lift up a rock, and swarms of ants come boiling out. I work outdoors in the evening to stay cool, and hordes of mosquitoes descend to feast on me. I feel the permanent furrow between my brows deepen a bit as I discover new signs of caterpillar munching, aphid sucking, and general feeding mayhem on plants I nurtured from seed.
After a few hard freezes, I can accomplish all kinds of garden chores in peace, without spraying myself or any plants. Winter is also a good time to make a dent in the next generation of garden pests. Many insects spend their dormancy in garden debris, so tidying up the flower garden over winter can remove the eggs of the next generation. While you’re at it, cultivate the soil to expose larvae and eggs to desiccating winter winds.