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Harm­less to gar­den­ers, hoverflies of­ten cause panic be­cause of their warn­ing coloura­tion of black and or­ange or yel­low stripes, in various shades, mim­ick­ing wasps and bees. Well named, they hover above flow­ers dur­ing sum­mer and are of­ten present in huge num­bers on pollen-rich flow­ers, es­pe­cially if they’re yel­low or or­ange. Adult fe­males need to feed on nec­tar and pollen to get the pro­tein needed to lay eggs. These eggs hatch into green or par­tially trans­par­ent mag­gots, that crawl around plants feed­ing on aphids. So hoverflies are good in two ways: the adults are pol­li­na­tors and the lar­vae hoover up aphids for us.

How to help them Plant lots of yel­low flow­ers such as layia, cal­en­dula and lim­nan­thes among your aphid-prone plants, such as roses and broad beans. Even lilies will at­tract masses of hoverflies with their large, pollen-rich sta­mens.

The poached egg plant lim­nan­thes will a ract hoverflies

Hoverflies are both pollinator and pest eater!

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