How gardeners can control pests and also protect pollinators

  • This June 2022 image provided by Jessica Damiano shows cottony azalea scale egg masses on the undersides of a rhododendron's leaves in Glen Head, N.Y. They can be easily wiped off or destroyed without pesticides by dabbing them with an alcohol-soaked cotton swab. (Jessica Damiano via AP)

  • This image provided by John Damiano shows a monarch butterfly on Aug. 18, 2021, in Glen Head, N.Y. The use of chemicals against garden pests threatens bees, butterflies and other pollinators. (John Damiano via AP)

Picture this: You’ve planted some milkweed, bee balm or California lilac, and you’re delighted to see bees and butterflies fluttering about your garden. You feel good about nourishing pollinators and love the life those plants attract to your yard.