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How to keep stink bugs out of your garden

Wednesday - 2/16/2011, 12:24pm  ET

stinkbugs that just hatched (AP/USDA)
Here's what stink bug eggs and newly hatched stink bugs look like. (AP)
Darci Marchese, wtop.com

WASHINGTON - They're brown and ugly. They love your home and garden. Most of all, they stink.

They are stink bugs and you better get used to them.

"(Stink bugs) are making a population surge," says WTOP Garden Editor Mike McGrath.

He says the bugs from Asia have been in the U.S. for less than a decade but now that they're here, they are here to stay.

"These pests are going to be with us from now on," McGrath says.

"They're not ever going to ever go away."

He says they escaped the cold by coming into our houses.

"They're waking up now and now they're finding its harder to get out than it was to get in."

In the spring, they will likely gravitate toward your vegetable garden. McGrath says you can attach a mirror to a garden hoe and look for stink bug eggs in your garden every other day.

He says stink bug eggs are easy to spot since they are so unique.

"You're looking for geometric collections of eggs," says McGrath.

"It's like a pyramid of barrels or a perfect rectangle of barrels. These bugs have some sort of artistic sense."

If you find the eggs, McGrath says destroy them with a vengeance.

"Crush them up between your fingers, taunt them, yell at them. Tell them 'You picked the wrong garden to lay your eggs in, Mama stink bug, come back for more.'"

(Copyright 2011 by WTOP. All rights reserved.)