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Flea beetles, Swallowtail Caterpillars, Tomato Horn Worms, oh my!

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Flea beetles, Swallowtail Caterpillars, Tomato Horn Worms, oh my!

Post  cawsings on 6/30/2011, 10:37 pm

It's been a "pesty" 24 hours for my garden beds! This is our first year for a garden though my parents have gardened in this area for as long as I can remember. I noticed flea beetles the other day so we purchased some neem oil. I applied it last night and this morning when I was watering I noticed two pretty colored caterpillars on the green part of a carrot. Since I've only really seen the larger horn worms at my parent's house and the carrot was right next to my tomatoes, I wasn't sure what they were...a quick Google search showed me that what was on top of my carrot were Swallowtail Caterpillars and not horn worms. I also learned more about the horn worm and was surprised to learn that they leave droppings (which almost look like mouse droppings).

This evening we were adding more soil to our potato tower, I decided to look at the tomato plants again. Sure enough, I spotted the droppings right away and pulled off 4 or 5 very small (thank goodness) horn worms! It seemed like most were on one plant (I think the grape tomato)...and only in one 4x4 bed...the other one has tomato plants, too but no horn worms. Do you find that they are attracted to some plants over others? I had read that planting petunias near them helps (which I did) this year. I guess I'll be buying some bacillus thuringiensis this weekend!
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Re: Flea beetles, Swallowtail Caterpillars, Tomato Horn Worms, oh my!

Post  shannon1 on 7/1/2011, 1:19 am

If you plant it, they will come. Smile Sorry I just love "Feild Of dreams"
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Re: Flea beetles, Swallowtail Caterpillars, Tomato Horn Worms, oh my!

Post  UnderTheBlackWalnut on 7/1/2011, 2:02 pm

OHHHH....so that's what ate one of my tomato plants in a pot! I was trying to figure out how a mouse could climb that flexible stem! :scratch:
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Re: Flea beetles, Swallowtail Caterpillars, Tomato Horn Worms, oh my!

Post  MelissaG on 7/30/2011, 2:03 am

Yes! Horn worms can be very bad! My first time with sfg was last year and I found too. The poop is huge, we said it was like rabbit droppings! I used BT and it worked great. These things give me the creeps. They are huge and gross. Now we have Japanese beetles....I'm starting to wonder what's going on here!

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Re: Flea beetles, Swallowtail Caterpillars, Tomato Horn Worms, oh my!

Post  camprn on 7/30/2011, 8:37 pm

@MelissaG wrote:Yes! Horn worms can be very bad! My first time with sfg was last year and I found too. The poop is huge, we said it was like rabbit droppings! I used BT and it worked great. These things give me the creeps. They are huge and gross. Now we have Japanese beetles....I'm starting to wonder what's going on here!
Isn't it amazing the things that seem new to us, in the world around us? Very Happy

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Re: Flea beetles, Swallowtail Caterpillars, Tomato Horn Worms, oh my!

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