Nature’s Pest Control

Tomato hornworms are not the critters that you want to see on your garden tomato plants.  These hornworms were found on the tomato plants in the garden at Miller Nature Preserve where they have chewed  the leaves on that stem completely off.  Nature also has created a tiny braconid wasp which is parasitic, only laying its eggs in the hornworm larva.  At the stage of the picture below the eggs have hatched and are now cocoons seen on the body of the hornworm.  By the time the wasps emerge from the cocoons, the hornworm will have died.  The wasps will fly off and look for more hornworms.  In this case a parasitic insect is good for our gardens.

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One Response to Nature’s Pest Control

  1. Becca says:

    I have learned to let a few hornworms live on my tomato plants once I have gotten the fruit I want off of them. Hornworms become hummingbird-like sphinx moths, and I so enjoy seeing them at my Physostegia and Verbena bonariensis plants that I don’t have the heart to do away with the caterpillars they come from:)

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