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Yes, Hornworms DO eat your tomatoes....

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Yes, Hornworms DO eat your tomatoes....

Post  quiltbea on 8/27/2011, 1:27 pm

One of our members stated they didn't kill all their hornworms because they only ate a few leaves, not the tomatoes, and then turned into a lovely moth.



I have a surprise for that person. This is the damage to only 2 of my firm, ripening tomatoes done by a hornworm. I found the hornworm right across one of these toms happily eating away.

If you don't remove and destroy tomato hornworms when you find them, and they are hard to see because they are the same color as the tomato's vine, you will have many dozens of tomatoes destroyed instead. Sometimes its easier to just move your hand under the leaves and along the branches until you feel the soft body, if you can stand it. If you find any green toms with this damage or your lovely nearly ripe toms with this damage, hunt for that culprit and destroy it. They can destroy a whole plant in a week.

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Re: Yes, Hornworms DO eat your tomatoes....

Post  NHGardener on 8/27/2011, 2:23 pm

I must've pulled 30 hornworms off my tomato plants this summer, and spent a lot of time squinting at vines trying to find them! It absolutely amazes me how well they camouflage. They eat foliage quickly and weaken the plant. None of mine had the parasitic wasp.

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Re: Yes, Hornworms DO eat your tomatoes....

Post  duhh on 8/27/2011, 9:03 pm

I also had one eat one of my bell peppers I was waiting to ripen! Little beasts. They don't last long once I find them.

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Re: Yes, Hornworms DO eat your tomatoes....

Post  quiltbea on 8/28/2011, 9:26 am

Well, I checked my eggplants to see what I could gather before Irene and knew there was a nice one forming. Lo and behold, a hornworm got it before me. The beast wasn't on the plant but the fruit was partially destroyed by nibbling.

Sorry, I didn't take a picture before tossing it in the compost pile and now the storm is approaching with lots of rain.

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Re: Yes, Hornworms DO eat your tomatoes....

Post  NHGardener on 8/28/2011, 9:48 am

Fortunately my hornworms didn't attack anything but my tomato plants, but I would think they'd be easier to spot on eggplants and pepper plants?

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Re: Yes, Hornworms DO eat your tomatoes....

Post  camprn on 8/28/2011, 9:55 am

I was fortunate to have been successful in hunting hornworms by being vigilant, resulting in minimal damage this year.

____________________________

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There are certain pursuits which, if not wholly poetic and true, do at least suggest a nobler and finer relation to nature than we know. The keeping of bees, for instance. ~ Henry David Thoreau

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Re: Yes, Hornworms DO eat your tomatoes....

Post  NHGardener on 8/28/2011, 10:17 am

camprn - Do hornworms show up every year?

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Re: Yes, Hornworms DO eat your tomatoes....

Post  camprn on 8/28/2011, 10:22 am

Yup, just like mosquitoes and ants and potato bugs and vine borers and cabbage worms and.... Part of the Circle of Life. Wink

____________________________

40 years a gardener and going strong with SFG.
http://squarefoot.creatingforum.com/t3574-the-end-of-july-7-weeks-until-frost

There are certain pursuits which, if not wholly poetic and true, do at least suggest a nobler and finer relation to nature than we know. The keeping of bees, for instance. ~ Henry David Thoreau

http://squarefoot.creatingforum.com/t1306-other-gardening-books

Outlander is outstanding!


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Re: Yes, Hornworms DO eat your tomatoes....

Post  NHGardener on 8/28/2011, 11:31 am

Great. Now I have something to look forward to for next summer. Wink

Sitting inside today, waiting out the storm, trying to position away from where any falling trees might topple. Wonder what our gardens will look like tomorrow. I staked my cornstalks with 5' poles wrapped all around with string. Couldn't really sink them too far into the ground tho so maybe the entire thing will topple, it will be interesting to see.

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Re: Yes, Hornworms DO eat your tomatoes....

Post  madnicmom on 8/28/2011, 10:51 pm

I seen this thread the other day but didn't have time to read it. I was watering the garden tonight and seen this catapillar and thought " i'd better check that thread out". LOL



Well sure enough, I found my first hornworm, he was about 2 inches long with these white sacks hanging off him.



I've have had some damage this year, I'm on a hormworm hunt tomorrow now!



Thank you!! I've learned so much this year, it isn't funny!

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Re: Yes, Hornworms DO eat your tomatoes....

Post  middlemamma on 8/29/2011, 2:12 am

@madnicmom wrote:
Well sure enough, I found my first hornworm, he was about 2 inches long with these white sacks hanging off him.

Parasitic wasp eggs?

http://gardening.about.com/od/gardenproblems/ig/Insects-and-Diseases-of-Plants/Tomato-Hornworm-with-Predator.htm

If you let those ones stay in your garden you won't have too many hornworms... from what I read.

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Re: Yes, Hornworms DO eat your tomatoes....

Post  madnicmom on 8/29/2011, 8:29 am

Yes, that was it. He had like 10 or so hanging from him.

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Re: Yes, Hornworms DO eat your tomatoes....

Post  NHGardener on 8/29/2011, 5:37 pm

I never found the parasitic wasp eggs on mine - maybe I snatched them up too quickly. Did you find they made any difference, camprn?

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Re: Yes, Hornworms DO eat your tomatoes....

Post  camprn on 8/29/2011, 6:12 pm

@NHGardener wrote:I never found the parasitic wasp eggs on mine - maybe I snatched them up too quickly. Did you find they made any difference, camprn?
I don't have anymore hornworms. Wink

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There are certain pursuits which, if not wholly poetic and true, do at least suggest a nobler and finer relation to nature than we know. The keeping of bees, for instance. ~ Henry David Thoreau

http://squarefoot.creatingforum.com/t1306-other-gardening-books

Outlander is outstanding!


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Re: Yes, Hornworms DO eat your tomatoes....

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