View Full Version : gardening question

Jun 26th, 2008, 07:20 AM
are water beetles a threat to plants? i have a planter with various herbs growing inside, and when i moved the planter i noticed that under it was like hundreds of water beetles. are they a threat? i don't want to kill them, and i felt bad after exposing them to the sunlight. i know that because of me they have to reestablish their living space.

Jun 26th, 2008, 05:20 PM
No. All species of water beetles that I know of are predatory. They are eating other small insects, worms, etc. Some eat mosquito larvae, so they are good to have. Be careful of the giant waterbugs, as they can bite really hard.

However, if they are actually living under the planter they are not water beetles (water beetles are totally aquatic). They are something else. If you can give me more of a description, I might be able to identify them. Also, tell me where you so I can be as accurate as possible.


Jun 26th, 2008, 05:33 PM
I know I have a lot of little woodlice under plant pots in the garden..........we call them slaters over here...........I don't know if that's a correct term for them or not.
I always feel sad when I lift a pot and see them scurrying around.............I hate disturbing them! I hope they find it easy getting another place to live. :)

Jun 26th, 2008, 09:44 PM
well, we call them water beetles here in california. they are just small black beatles, about 2 centimeters or so long, that like to hang out in most dark places. hence, under my planters. we get huge amounts of them around this time, early summer, because of the heat and humidity.

they don't seem to do much other than dig under the ground under the planter, and if i even slightly move the planter they all start digging up and adjusting. i feel bad, but i don't want them getting into my plants. especially if i start growing potatoes, which i'm pretty sure they would start digging and biting into. luckily, all i am currently growing is herbs, and they don't seem to be going for them.

Jun 27th, 2008, 03:10 PM
I don't think they would bother the potatoes. Hard to say though. If they are living under the pots they are probably feeding off decaying plant matter and I don't think they would bother with the potatoes.


Jun 27th, 2008, 08:28 PM
ok, thanks! :)

Sep 29th, 2008, 07:22 PM
These could be Ground Beetles (Family Carabidae), which are almost entirely beneficial and to be greatly encouraged by us gardeners, as they are major predators of slugs!
Organic growers plant "beetle banks" of tussocky grass especially to encourage them.


states that there are about 2000 species in North America.