This Saturday Magnolia Plantation & Gardens will be holding it’s annual ladybug release. What exactly is a ladybug release? Are there thousands of ladybugs held in Magnolia Plantation captivity? No, quite the contrary. More than 150,000 ladybugs will be set free in the Lowcountry’s largest one-time release. Classified as a beetle, ladybugs are natural predators to harmful insects such as aphids, scale insects and other small insects. They are a beneficial addition to keep harmful and pesky insects at bay. It is a fun family event with participants given a container holding several hundred ladybugs, which will then be set free throughout the 60-acre garden. There are prizes too! Best ladybug costume is one of them!

I have always loved the colorful little bugs and of course the folklore surrounding them. As a child, I was told that they bring good luck if they land on you.Each spot on a ladybug’s back indicates one month of good luck. The more spots the ladybug sports, the longer the run of good luck a person can expect to enjoy. Also, if a Ladybug is held in the hand while making a wish, the direction that it flies away to shows where your luck will come from.

It seems that many cultures have their own take on the ladybug……In Belgium, people believed that if a Ladybug crawled across a young woman’s hand, she would be married within a year. In Brussels, the black spots on the back of a Ladybug indicate to the person holding it how many children he/she will have. During the Pioneer days, if a family found a Ladybug in their log cabin during the winter, it was considered a “Good Omen”. Swiss folklore suggests if you catch a Ladybug in your home, count the number of spots and that’s how many dollars you’ll soon find. (Hmmmm I like that one)!

For obvious reasons, killing a ladybug is a no-no. I wouldn’t want to jinx any possibility of good luck and fortune!