Ladybug House Plans: How to Build a Ladybug House

Updated on March 27, 2018
Anthony Altorenna profile image

I like spending time in the garden, around the house, in the workshop, and fishing. Many of the projects in my articles are originals.

DIY Ladybug House
DIY Ladybug House | Source

Make a Ladybug Shelter for Your Garden

Building a ladybug house is easy project that combines my gardening and woodworking hobbies into a fun and functional addition to our garden. Essentially a simple six-sided box, this house offers the little beetles with shelter from the rain and wind as well as protection from birds and other predators. The finished bug box can be left to weather naturally or painted in bright colors. Either way, the ladybug shelter is an attractive and useful addition to any garden.

The simple design makes this an easy-to-build project that is perfectly suited for pieces of scrap wood or recycled lumber. I used a few pieces of pine that I found after rummaging through my scrap bin, and it took less than an hour to build. A fun and inexpensive project for building with the kids, the finished beetle box is a nice handcrafted and personalized gift for your favorite gardener.

Good bugs to have in the garden, ladybugs are also known as lady beetles and ladybird beetle. Despite their cute appearance, these beneficial insects are voracious predators with an insatiable appetite for aphids and other soft-bodied insect pests. An adult ladybug is a gardener's friend, chowing down on over 50 aphids every day.

Source

How to Build a Ladybug House

Source

DIY Ladybug House Plans

The cutting list:

  • Front (A) 3-1/2"W x 4-1/2"L
  • Front Slats (B) 3/4"W x 4-1/2"L (Qty = 2)
  • Back (C) 4-1/2"W x 7-1/4"L
  • Sides (D) 3-1/2"W x 8"L (Qty = 2)
  • Roof (E) 5"W x 7-1/2"L
  • Bottom (F) 3-1/2"W x 4-1/2"L

To build the bug house, start by laying out the dimensions in the cutting list to several pieces of pine. The top of the side pieces (D) are cut at a 30 degree angle to create an angled roof to help shed rainwater from the box.

To match the slope of the roof, the top edge of the front (A) and back (C) pieces are also cut at a 30-degree angle.

Cut the roof (E) to size, again beveling the back edge of the roof at the same 30-degrees to match the angles of the front, back and side pieces. When assembled, the angled cuts support the slanted roof to give the lady beetle house a neat and finished appearance.

Source

Building the Ladybug House

Some Assembly Require

Begin the assembly of the bug box by attaching the side pieces to the bottom section. I used weather-resistance nails with a dab of waterproof glue to secure each of the pieces together.

Slide the back section into place, and secure it with more glue and nails.

The front section is attached with (2) weather-resistant screws. The placement of the screws is important: measure down 3/4" from the top edge of the front, then drive the screws through the Side piece and into the front section. Position the screws directly across from each other, and only tighten the screws enough to hold the front piece in place.

The careful placement of the screws allows the front section to pivot, creating a simple "hinge" as shown in the photo to provide access to the interior of the shelter for cleaning or inserting ladybug lures to attract occupants to the ladybug shelter.

Source

Attach the front slats (B) to the shelter, positioning the slats under the front section to form three equally spaced openings for the little beetles to enter the box. I used the cut-offs from the beveled angled cuts for the back and front sections to make the slats, and I attached the slats to the inside of the box with a bit of glue and a nail. Be careful not to split the slats when driving the nails through the side pieces to hold them in place.

The last step is to attach the roof (E). Line up the bevel cut along the back edge of the roof, positioning the roofline so that it extends equally over both sides. Attach the roof with a few more weather-proof nails.

Give the bug box a light sanding to remove any saw marks and to ease the corners. Your new ladybug house is now ready for the garden or if you prefer, paint or stain the house to make it stand out among the flowers. I chose a walnut stain for a medium-brown colored roof, and painted the rest of the house white with an exterior aerosol spray paint.

Mount the finished ladybug house in a sunny garden location, between one to three feet above the ground. I used a simple picture frame hanger, tacked to the back of the box with a couple of small nails, and I'll mount the box to a post in the garden.

Add a ladybug lure and a bit of straw or crumpled leaves to the interior, and the house is ready for occupancy.

Ladybug House Plans
Ladybug House Plans | Source

Have You Seen Ladybugs In Your Garden?

Please take our Ladybug poll:

See results

Attracting Ladybugs to the Garden

Ladybug
Ladybug | Source

Ladybugs forage endlessly in search of food and suitable places to breed. If you have a population of aphids attacking the plants in your garden, then you have one of the key ingredients to attract the attention of the local ladybugs.

A ladybug house won't attract a colony of ladybugs, and it may not even be enough to entice them to stay. A wildlife friendly garden combines a variety of plants including native perennials and shrubs along with the colorful annuals and tasty veggies.

So you have lots of flowers and shrubs, a plague of aphids is sucking the life juices from the leaves, but there are no ladybugs to be found? Try releasing a thousand or so hungry ladybugs into the garden.

Ladybugs are raised commercially, and they ship well through the mail. If you've provided the right environment, a package of ladybugs might start a new colony that will protect your garden for several of their generations.

Do Not Use Pesticides in the Garden!

Broad spectrum pesticides kill both the bad bugs as well as the lady bugs and other beneficial insects

Attracting Ladybugs into the garden
Attracting Ladybugs into the garden | Source

Releasing Ladybugs into the Garden

And getting them to stay.

Now that you've ordered your ladybugs and the package arrives filled with the lively little critters, it's time to release them into the garden where they will feast on aphids and other bad bugs. But how can you increase the chances of a successful release?

Here are a few tips for releasing ladybugs safely, and getting them to stay.

  • When the package of ladybugs arrives in the mail, temporarily store the little beetles in the refrigerator.
  • Plan on releasing your ladybugs in the early evening, preferably on a calm evening without a lot of wind. Ladybugs do not fly at night and when set free, they will quickly look for a sheltered spot to rest until the next morning.
  • Water the plants in the Release Area. After a long trip through the mail, the ladybugs will need to quench their thirst.

Tips for Releasing Ladybugs in Your Garden

This short video by Growing Your Greens give three easy steps for releasing ladybugs and enticing them to stay in your garden.

Ladybug (Public Domain)
Ladybug (Public Domain)

Ladybug Facts

* Ladybugs are among the most familiar and easily recognized insect. Most species of ladybugs have shiny red, orange or yellow shells with black spots. Some types of ladybugs have shiny black shells with red or yellow spots.

* There are about 5,000 different species of ladybugs found around the world, and there are at least 400 different species of ladybugs in North America.

* Most species of ladybugs complete their life cycle in less than a year, though some ladybug species can live up to three years.

* A female ladybug is larger than a male ladybug.

* You cannot tell the age of a ladybug by the number of spots on its back.

* Many cultures value ladybugs as a sign of good luck.

* During its lifetime, a ladybug can eat almost 5,000 aphids.

* Ladybugs were sent into space! Four ladybugs traveled aboard the space shuttle to see how they capture their prey in zero-gravity. All four ladybugs survived the mission.

* Ladybugs are active in spring and summer. As the cold weather approaches, ladybugs seek sheltered areas to hibernate, including inside our homes! Hibernating colonies can number thousands of ladybugs.

* Legends say that the name 'ladybug' originated from early farmers who prayed to the Virgin Mary for help with the pests that plagued their crops. After the beetles ate all of the pesky insects, the farmer coined the name "Beetle of Our Lady". Over time, this evolved in lady beetle and ladybug.

The New Home For My Ladybug House

Ladybug House Garden
Ladybug House Garden | Source

Questions & Answers

    © 2013 Anthony Altorenna

    Tell Us About the Ladybugs in Your Garden

      0 of 8192 characters used
      Post Comment

      • profile image

        Km Koesler 15 months ago

        I have tons of Asian ladybugs collecting in corners in my house. I love them in the garden, but not so much inside. Will providing overwintering houses outside help deter them from overwintering and getting squished inside?

      • profile image

        Doc_Holliday 4 years ago

        Ladybugs are frequent visitors to my backyard so I am going to have to build a house for them now.

      • profile image

        DebMartin 4 years ago

        You are the king of critter houses and feeders. You've really outdone yourself with the ladybug house. I'd never heard of one (the house that is, not the lady bug...plenty of those). Thanks for all the cool facts. Right now, my house seems to be my ladybug house. Must get them one of their own. ;-)

      • Rhonda Lytle profile image

        Rhonda Lytle 4 years ago from Deep in the heart of Dixie

        This is so awesome. To be totally honest, I sucketh at woodworking. But, I love lady bugs and Mr. Vix is getting an email with your URL. He's better at this kind of stuff. Super cute and highly useful project, not to mention a great article.

      • KimGiancaterino profile image

        KimGiancaterino 5 years ago

        I love your ladybug page and was excited to learn about the ladybug experiment in space. We have a large garden and don't use pesticides. Hopefully your tips will help us lure even more ladybugs this year. We're well stocked with aphids!

      • clouda9 lm profile image

        clouda9 lm 5 years ago

        Saving this so hubby and or son can make one of these ladybug houses for our garden area. :)

      • Vikk Simmons profile image

        'Vikk Simmons 5 years ago from Houston

        Love the ladybug house although I doubt I could make one. Great idea. I don't see them as much as I used to.

      • rob-hemphill profile image

        Rob Hemphill 5 years ago from Ireland

        I love the idea of having a bespoke ladybug shelter in the garden, must look into further as I enjoy taking photos of them.

      • profile image

        getmoreinfo 5 years ago

        Aww I adore ladybugs, and what a neat idea for making a little ladybug house for the garden. I learned something new about the lady bug life cycle that is interesting.

      • darciefrench lm profile image

        darciefrench lm 5 years ago

        I adore ladybugs - every september for some reason there are tons of them on my patio. I've just planted flowers on the patio, now need to add a miniature sized lady bug house.

      working

      This website uses cookies

      As a user in the EEA, your approval is needed on a few things. To provide a better website experience, hubpages.com uses cookies (and other similar technologies) and may collect, process, and share personal data. Please choose which areas of our service you consent to our doing so.

      For more information on managing or withdrawing consents and how we handle data, visit our Privacy Policy at: "https://feltmagnet.com/privacy-policy#gdpr"

      Show Details
      Necessary
      HubPages Device IDThis is used to identify particular browsers or devices when the access the service, and is used for security reasons.
      LoginThis is necessary to sign in to the HubPages Service.
      Google RecaptchaThis is used to prevent bots and spam. (Privacy Policy)
      AkismetThis is used to detect comment spam. (Privacy Policy)
      HubPages Google AnalyticsThis is used to provide data on traffic to our website, all personally identifyable data is anonymized. (Privacy Policy)
      HubPages Traffic PixelThis is used to collect data on traffic to articles and other pages on our site. Unless you are signed in to a HubPages account, all personally identifiable information is anonymized.
      Amazon Web ServicesThis is used to collect data on traffic to articles and other pages on our site. Unless you are signed in to a HubPages account, all personally identifiable information is anonymized. (Privacy Policy)
      CloudflareThis is used to quickly and efficiently deliver files such as javascript, cascading style sheets, images, and videos. (Privacy Policy)
      Google Hosted LibrariesJavascript software libraries such as jQuery are loaded at endpoints on the googleapis.com or gstatic.com domains, for performance and efficiency reasons. (Privacy Policy)
      Facebook LoginYou can use this to streamline signing up for, or signing in to your Hubpages account. No data is shared with Facebook unless you engage with this feature. (Privacy Policy)
      PaypalThis is used for a registered author who enrolls in the HubPages Earnings program and requests to be paid via PayPal. No data is shared with Paypal unless you engage with this feature. (Privacy Policy)
      Google AdSense Host APIThis service allows you to sign up for or associate a Google AdSense account with HubPages, so that you can earn money from ads on your articles. No data is shared unless you engage with this feature. (Privacy Policy)
      Features
      Google Custom SearchThis is feature allows you to search the site. (Privacy Policy)
      Google MapsSome articles have Google Maps embedded in them. (Privacy Policy)
      Google ChartsThis is used to display charts and graphs on articles and the author center. (Privacy Policy)
      Google YouTubeSome articles have YouTube videos embedded in them. (Privacy Policy)
      VimeoSome articles have Vimeo videos embedded in them. (Privacy Policy)
      MavenThis supports the Maven widget and search functionality. (Privacy Policy)
      Marketing
      Google AdSenseThis is an ad network. (Privacy Policy)
      Google DoubleClickGoogle provides ad serving technology and runs an ad network. (Privacy Policy)
      Index ExchangeThis is an ad network. (Privacy Policy)
      SovrnThis is an ad network. (Privacy Policy)
      Facebook AdsThis is an ad network. (Privacy Policy)
      Amazon Unified Ad MarketplaceThis is an ad network. (Privacy Policy)
      AppNexusThis is an ad network. (Privacy Policy)
      OpenxThis is an ad network. (Privacy Policy)
      Rubicon ProjectThis is an ad network. (Privacy Policy)
      TripleLiftThis is an ad network. (Privacy Policy)
      Say MediaWe partner with Say Media to deliver ad campaigns on our sites. (Privacy Policy)
      Remarketing PixelsWe may use remarketing pixels from advertising networks such as Google AdWords, Bing Ads, and Facebook in order to advertise the HubPages Service to people that have visited our sites.
      Conversion Tracking PixelsWe may use conversion tracking pixels from advertising networks such as Google AdWords, Bing Ads, and Facebook in order to identify when an advertisements has successfully resulted in the desired action, such as signing up for the HubPages Service or publishing an article on the HubPages Service.
      Statistics
      Author Google AnalyticsThis is used to provide traffic data and reports to the authors of articles on the HubPages Service. (Privacy Policy)
      ComscoreComScore is a media measurement and analytics company providing marketing data and analytics to enterprises, media and advertising agencies, and publishers. Non-consent will result in ComScore only processing obfuscated personal data. (Privacy Policy)
      Amazon Tracking PixelSome articles display amazon products as part of the Amazon Affiliate program, this pixel provides traffic statistics for those products (Privacy Policy)