Monday, August 25, 2008

Welcome and Unwelcome Insects

Yesterday I was out in the garden and saw two of these wasps on my oregano blossoms. They are large and about 1 1/2" long. They seemed to totally ignore me, but they made me a little leery. I wanted to know if they were aggressive like yellow jackets or not. I kept thinking that I wouldn't want to get stung by one of those. It turns out they are peaceful wasps, Great Golden Diggers. They capture katydids and crickets for their young and I certainly have enough of both of those this year.

Then I noticed this monstrosity on my tomato plant. I was VERY lucky to find it when I did. It had only eaten one branch and about half of 6 tomatoes. Tomato Horn Worms can eat a plant down to nothing in a very short time. They are so easy to overlook. I only noticed it because I saw a half eaten tomato. I was thinking it strange that my chipmunks didn't pick the tomatoes like usual, but left it on the plant. Then I noticed the caterpillar. Ack. I'll keep a close eye on those tomatoes for a while just in case more eggs were laid.

This morning I had a wonderful surprise. I had some blossoms starting to open on my peas. I'm not sure what kind of peas these are. I planted two kinds, but forgot to label them. Most of the plants from one variety rotted out with all the rain, but these grew quite well and sidled over to take over the unused part of the trellis. I can't wait to see what they make. Snowpeas or snap peas? Either way I'll be happy with them. I think I'm rooting for the snap peas since those are what died in the spring pea planting. Planting more than one variety has really been helpful for certain plants. If one dies another might just thrive. I need to do this more often.


  1. Yuck, tomato horn worms have got to be one of the ugliest pests I have ever seen in the garden and when they rear those horns...EEWW!

  2. I actually think they are kind of pretty. Well until I have to kill it. Then it is just disgusting.

  3. Yuck, tomato horn worms are awful. grr. i hope that doesn't happen to my plants. yay for the new peas. i want to try to grow peas next spring.