Thursday, April 21, 2011

Oh no, you don't!

Caught the first interlopers today on my tomato plants.

While watering upstairs in Tomato Heaven, I saw some little black dots on the leaves of my Yellow Pear variety ... and then right above them ... a small green worm. The same type of cabbage looper worm that got my plants last year!

I said aloud, "Oh no, you don't!!" and grabbed it in my fingers, squishing it to DEATH.

Yes, gross. But this is war, kids. I am so not joking about this. All vermin who try to eat my tomatoes, or leaves or stems ... or even try to look sideways at them ... will die horrible deaths.

Later, I was on the lookout in the Condo Raised Bed, and I saw a dusting of tiny eggs across both the Jubilee and Black Cherry varieties, plus caught two worms. Mine Mighty Hand of Worm Death smited both loopers down, and then I hard-sprayed the affected leaves with water to remove the eggs.

This afternoon I'm getting some natural pest control, such as Bacillum thuringiensis. No one but humans will eat my tomatoes this year.


  1. Heh. I can sympathize. My mild mannered vegetarian persona goes away when I'm confronted with something actually invading or eating my plants. We had an ant invasion this past winter, and after trying to deter them, had to resort to more drastic means. I felt bad, but what else could I do when they were streaming into the house? The relationship between humans and other animals is a deeply complex one.

  2. Yep, I come out guns blazing (or garden hose spraying). Those varmints are trying to steal our vegetastic food supply -- it's a primal urge to protect our foodstuff.

    Also, here in the desert we don't have long to grow things, so any infestation has to be dealt with immediately or you'll risk losing the season's goodies.

    P.S. This week's "Top Chef Masters" (Quickfire theme: Cook with Bugs) got me to wondering if I should just grab those loopers off the plant and pop 'em in my mouth. Ha!

  3. Funny, I feel like I am constantly fighting a battle of insects, wind, cold nights and hot days.

  4. I've definitely been lucky up until now this year with regard to bugs ... I hear you regarding the wind, cold nights and hot days though.
    Thanks for visiting my blog! If you're in the desert too, we should exchange gardening tips. :)

  5. Renee, I am always trying new techniques to work the desert. I now have winter and "rest of the year" boxes based on the sun. I tent to get no veggie production june through mid august, when everything comes back with a vengeance. I have also tried different varieties and I think I am going to be changing the methods I use to support my runner beans and tomatoes after the winds this year. I actually had a great winter garden going and we had a few frost nights in a row and it decimated everything but 1 tomato plant and 1 watermelon vine. I think if I use rectangular tomato supports and use soft ties to help guide the plant I will not have as much damage as the cone cages have.

  6. Oh, I am so done with the cone cages after this season. Flimsy, and they act like a sail for the wind to catch and knock over plants.

    In August (next planting) I may try making those chicken wire/large mesh ones that are formed into a cylinder around the plant.

    My winter garden consisted of mainly lettuces and broccoli. That's amazing that you had some tomatoes and watermelons going! All my tender plants were laid low during the Thanksgiving freeze last year.