Fireflies are insects found in many parts of the world. They usually appear at night in dimly lit or dark places, and have a warm glow on their backside that can be seen from behind them.
Fireflies are soft bodied beetles that emit a greenish or dull yellow-ish light to attract mates or prey. They are seen swarming around trees at night and sometimes even yards in some lucky occasions.
Fireflies aren’t warm because they emit light that does not fall within the UV or IR frequencies. The most common type of firefly emits yellow or orange light.
Fireflies vary in their color significantly. Some even emit a blue glow, though they are quite rare.
Fireflies do not bite, and it is important to know that they are all unique and come in a variety of different sizes, and there are some that are as large as an inch.
On evenings when fireflies are out and surrounding your garden or the yard, you’ll see yellow lights coming from between plants. It is a gorgeous sight, and many people try to attract these lightning bugs to their garden or yard.
Attracting fireflies is notoriously difficult. When people are unaware of how to attract them, they only ever see one or two pass their yard.
But how to attract fireflies to your garden? Here are some simple, yet effective, ways that you can use.
1. Stop Using Chemical Fertilizers
Fireflies are attracted to natural environments, which means they’ll avoid gardens that have been treated with pesticide or fertilizers.
Instead, stop using chemical fertilizer or pesticides in your garden at once; even if you release firefly’s caught from different sources.
Fireflies live in a larva form for approximately 90 days. During this time, they prefer to stay on the ground or near it, because their light source is not functional.
2. Maintain Moisture in the Soil
One important thing to know about fireflies is that they are drawn to moisture. If your yard doesn’t have much water, it’s not a good place for the fireflies to swarm.
To avoid a dry-out, be sure to water your garden and the soil as needed.
To help the garden during hot, dry summer months, you will want to make sure to water it as often as possible. In addition, adding a few pieces of dead wood in isolated areas can also be helpful.
If you are able to create cover using moist wood, it’s the perfect place for fireflies to rest.
3. Let the Grass Grow
One way to build a suitable habitat for fireflies is to let the grass grow as high and as densely as possible.
A clean lawn may be desirable, but it is not an ideal habitat for fireflies.
Cutting your grass less frequently is a recommendation from the National Gardening Association, which says that this will allow you to attract more fireflies.
The most important thing to know about these insects is that during the day time, they rest on tall blades of grass. If you continue to mow down your lawn regularly, you are effectively asking them to move away from your garden.
4. Add in a Water Feature
If you want to attract fireflies, adding an outdoor water feature can be helpful.
Fireflies love moisture, so adding in a variety of water features to your garden is an excellent idea. Fireflies also congregate around small puddles in the garden.
When fireflies are mating, a water feature can really give your garden an advantage. It will make it more attractive and even attract fireflies to it.
If you have a mosquito problem in your area, consider adding wire mesh to your windows and installing natural repellents.
5. Turn Off Artificial Light
Most people leave their porch lights on at night because of insects. Did you know that there are two reasons why these insects glow?
The first is to warn predators not to eat them, as they have a toxic blood.
Secondly, they want to create a light pattern that attracts mates. So don’t let them have their way by turning your outdoor lights on or off!
If you want to attract fireflies, never leave your porch light on at night. They are most attracted to darkness so keeping a light lit will scare them away.
6. Plant a Few Pine Trees
Adding pine trees to your garden is a great idea, not only to provide cover but also because they have beautiful leaves.
Deforestation is one of the bigger factors in a possible decline in firefly populations.
If possible, plant pine trees. The thick canopy leaves help to prevent artificial light beams from penetrating and provide a good area for the larvae to develop from tiny needles protruding from the plants.
7. Avoid Meddling in the Garden
It is much more important to avoid walking through the garden at night. In the evening, you’ll see these fireflies glowing softly from a distance, which means you should stay away.
If you disturb them by walking too close to their flight path, they will probably fly away. If they see the same danger and disturbance consistently, they are likely to move far away and not come back.