Tuesday, August 08, 2006

I come home to this

tomato hornworm
I spent last week in California doing some photography and touring - I came home to this critter (tomato hornworm) and darn near no remaining tomato foliage. Ah well, it was a good trip and I'm home safely. What's a few tomatoes anyway?

Having said that - I stomped over 20 of them last night and this morning. No fuss, no muss, no chemicals - just pick 'em off the vines (they feel like smooth leather) and stomp them. If you're a bit squeamish, I note you can wear gloves, cover them with a bit of soil before you stomp or drown them in a bucket of water. All quicker, cheaper and more environmentally friendly than nuking with some chemical.

And I'm sure that after I get another cup of coffee into me, I'll be able to find more out there. Oh joy!


At 9:44 AM, Blogger Heidi said...

Those things must multiply.... I had tomato plants a few years ago. It was part of my morning routine, caused me to get up a 30 minutes earlier, to go out, with barbeque tongs (I am squemish), and pick about 25-30 of those buggers off about 5 tomato plants. Then when I would get home at night, it was a repeat ritual, after the dogs were taken for a walk. My horn worms had an attractive red sticker that came off their tail end. I still want to know where they were coming from....?

At 1:34 PM, Blogger Janet said...

Doug, I really do appreciate your continued emphasis on chemical-free gardening. Keep up the good work!

At 11:51 AM, Blogger lisa said...

I agree wholeheartedly with the chemical-free approach, and all the happy amphibians in my yard are a testament to this!

At 4:09 PM, Blogger lefty said...

I live in Menominee,Mi and have been gardening for over 20yrs and have seen but one hornworm on my 15-20 tomato plants. I guess the garden gods have been more active up here. I use no chemicals or fertilzers, just lots of mulch and tlc.

At 1:03 PM, Anonymous Anonymous said...

dot (a buglover) says: If you allow tomato hookworms covered with little white cocoons to remain in your garden they will slowly die, and (if no chemical insecticides are used), Braconid Wasps (parasites) will hatch and continue to protect all future gardens. Adults of the green worms which look like hummingbirds, do some good also; they pollinate tubular flowers, such as nicotinia, petunia, butterfly bushes, honeysuckle and trumpet vines!


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