About Us

DMV Beneficials is a collective of plant lovers with two main objectives: to share quality information on beneficial insects and houseplant pests and to split the cost of ordering beneficial insects in the greater Washington DC metro area.  

DMV Beneficials, formerly known as DC & Neighbors Beneficial Insect Group, had its humble beginnings in 2020 when just five plant-loving people decided to do a group order of beneficial insects to cut down on shipping costs. They wanted to see if other people would be interested, so they began a Facebook group to coordinate and share information. In just under a year, the group exploded to over 1,700 thousand members with an average of 100-120 people ordering beneficial insects every two weeks. On bug days, distribution is not just within the DC city limits, but out west into Northern Virginia, East to Annapolis and North as far as Baltimore, MD.  

Access to quality information around pest identification and pest management is essential to the ethos of the group.  Accurate pest ID is key to an effective treatment plan, and the collective is experienced and thorough in identifying the insects on your plants. Additionally, the recommended treatment and prevention plans are always personalized to your specific growing conditions and are proven effective!  No more guesswork or toxic pesticide sprays – the collective is here to support you on your beneficial insect journey to happier and healthier plants.  

If you’re not located in the DC metro region, we are still happy to support you in your pest management!  Feel free to join our FB community, follow us on Instagram, check to see if there’s a chapter in your area, or reach out directly!  We love chatting plants and bugs.  

Please note – DMV Beneficials is not affiliated with any suppliers of beneficial insects and this information is not sponsored in any way. Our pest management recommendations are based solely on the collective’s education and experience and our goal is to share what works!

Our Operation

Group orders for the DC/MD/VA region are organized to deliver every other Thursday.  Our calendar will show you the timeline – an order can be placed with the group during the “order open” period.  The order will “close” one week in advance of delivery (per the beneficial insect supplier, orders must be placed one week in advance) and then bugs are delivered to Jamie Stanton in NW DC the following Thursday morning. 

Orders will then be sorted and those who placed an order will have the option to pick up their bugs from either a recurring location or from one of our volunteer distributors. Bugs are NOT directly shipped to your home. We currently have four main pickup locations: Plants Alive (Silver Spring, MD), Union Market (NE DC), Headquarters (NW DC), and Ellicott City (MD). 

It is STRONGLY recommended that you pick up your insects on the day of delivery.  The bugs deliver alive, and they don’t last long in the bottles.  You want as many live predators on your plants as possible!

To place an order, check our calendar to find out when the next order opens, then add yourself to the order spreadsheet. We do the bulk of our logistics and communications through Facebook, so please indicate if you prefer a different method of communication, and what the best way is to reach you.  

And as always, if you have any questions, please don’t hesitate to reach out!  We are always happy to help consult on Pest ID, Predator Selection, Order logistics, etc.

DMV Beneficials Board

Meet the amazing people responsible for making sure DMV Beneficials runs as smoothly as possible.

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Jamie Stanton
Chief Executive Officer
Jamie has been living in DC since 2017, where she works as an editorial researcher for National Geographic and grows way too many Alocasia. She received her MA from Middlebury Institute of International Studies, and prior to her arrival in NW DC, she worked as a disarmament researcher at the UN in Geneva. She also serves on the board of ECOPA, an organization that works with rural communities in El Salvador supporting sustainable agricultural initiatives. She oversees program design and implementation and is specifically interested in measuring and evaluating the impact of sustainable agriculture on community health. She prefers to be outside -rock climbing, wandering off trail, and exploring abandoned spaces- there is nothing she loves better than falling asleep in the pine forests.
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Elyse Mowle
Director of Community Engagement & Outreach
Elyse is a Colorado native who moved to DC in 2018. After killing multiple succulents, she found success  with houseplants in 2019 and, like many, found the DC plant community during the early days of the pandemic. Outside of plants, Elyse's interests include embroidery, spending time with her pets, rewatching favroite TV shows, and all things true crime. In addition to serving on the board of DMV Beneficials, Elyse works to increase access to mental healthcare, teaches forensic psychology, and works in private practice as a clinical psychologist. Elyse's favorite variety of plants are marantacae, and her favorite beneficial insects are pirate bugs.
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Tessa Simonds
Director of Community Standards & Systems
Tessa is a veteran digital organizer and consultant based in Washington, D.C. She has worked in politics for more than fifteen years in a variety of roles. Most days, Tessa can usually be found caring for her houseplants, listening to music, or talking to her best friend, Candace.
Amelia Thompson
Amelia Thompson
Director of Programs & Operations
By day, Amelia is a speech-language pathologist working with Deaf/hard-of-hearing elementary, middle school, and high school students on their language and literacy development using American Sign Language (ASL). A Texas native, Amelia moved to D.C. in 2017 but did not venture into the world of houseplants until the pandemic began. Outside of work, Amelia enjoys cuddling with her cats, working in the yard, and watching musicals.
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Harsha Balachandran
Director of Technical Systems and Accounts

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