has anyone personally seen ladybirds eating aphids? (and have pics to prove it)
although I didn't take pics, I have personally seen it, and you can certainly find numerous videos of it on youtube --
The thing to remember about biological controls such as aphids is that they will keep the aphid population under control, but they will not ELIMINATE aphids. That would be like humans making cows or chickens extinct because we ate every last one.
I whole-heartedly agree with z, and could not have said it better myself:
Sometimes pests just have tobe accepted - I grow many of my plants to sell, and I always account for several losses due to pests, which I see as merely nature taking something back for herself.
When I grow food I plant some for myself and my friends, and some for the unexpected visitors (be they rabbits, aphids, raccoons, caterpillars, or homeless vagrants). I'm not sure how best to explain it, but to me it all fits in with nature's great abundance and the joy of giving and receiving. We become rich by creating massive value for those around us (our environment, if you will). This is true both spiritually and financially, and it holds true both in the garden and in life.