Sunday, September 19, 2010

Gigantic Green Caterpillars on my tomatoes- Tobacco Hornworms


When going out to pick the latest batch of golden cherry tomatoes and water my thirsty plants, I discovered some HUGE caterpillars!

After some research we discovered that they are Tobacco Hornworms. If we left them there, they would continue eating all of the leaves off the tomato plants.


One particularly interesting fact about them - they only eat the unripened fruits (they like the nightshade family) and will not touch fruits once they start to ripen. You can see it happily chomping away at what was left of a green tomato in the photo above.

 In general, I figure that a certain amount of what I grow should be intended for the other living beings around us - the bugs and chipmunks and bunnies etc. This seemed a little excessive though as each caterpillar had eaten ALL of the leaves above them on the plants down to stubs. There were plenty of poop piles on the newspaper below.

Thanks Tobacco Hornworms for being interesting and teaching me something new. And thanks to Joe for taking care of them.


1 comment:

  1. Wow, I've seen those huge caterpillars! Good thing you stopped them before they ate your whole garden... lord knows what they would have eaten text.