Wednesday, September 1, 2010

Tobacco hornworms + Armageddon

I went back up there today. I went armed.

I wanted to see how much of a plant the tobacco hornworm monster could actually demolish overnight.

The answer? A lot.

And...there were more: three of them. Two on my black cherry tomato and one on my yellow pear.

One had its face in a tomato.

Beside them, my slowly ripening patio tomatoes...

I could not watch anymore.

I snipped the first one. It's your fault, Frank. That was awful. Horrible. So I cut the bare branches the other two fat ones were on, and flung them. I flung them far. Over the rooves and into the no man's land behind these brownstones. I'd be a great pitcher.

I read about them. They are not in danger of disappearing from the planet. My tomatoes were. And the natural pest control everyone coos about, the parasitic wasp that lays its eggs ON the caterpillar? So the larvae hatch and it eat alive??? What a way to die. It's awful!!!!!

I am shaken.

A G&T is coming up.

I see dead caterpillars.


  1. hmm...too bad you are not in a position to have chooks (chickens). You don't even have enough birdlife flying around, do you?
    Oh dear. Marie, I'm afraid you'll just have to continue with the manual eradication. How about putting them in a jar(with some leaves) and "donating' them to a local kindergarten?

  2. Back again...should have mentioned that, in the case of parasitic wasps, the caterpillar does not die in agony. It's anaesthetised.

  3. Oooooh I hope they got permanent amnesia from the flinging and never find their way back to your tomatoes!! You will have to do regular checkups. There are probably a lot more where those come from...xx

  4. Ugggggh! I can't stand them!

  5. clearly, a chicken coop on the rooftop is in order to eat the hornworms.

  6. I am almost in tears. Our poor poor gardens this year.

    We have voles now. I can't talk about it.

  7. NOW you've got the right idea! But keep looking becuse they are so hard to see. Watch the area around your plants (if it is light enough in color) for their poop. That's how i know there are still some chomping on my plants. Sorry, creepy SOBs, I want you dead!

  8. i am so happy to have found your blogs... sooo happy... xx pam

  9. Ugh. So disgusting and disturbing and... the things we do for our plants!

  10. It had to be done. Loose no sleep over this one.

  11. If they come back, put them in a jar and flush them.

  12. Fling away! It's much better than parasites! If there were endangered, it would be different. Defend your farm!!

  13. I couldn't help but think that the "the no man's land behind these brownstones" might in fact be someone else's backyard and garden.

  14. Worry not, Klaus. Ain't no gardens down there. Hence no man's land.


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