Saturday, August 29, 2009

Creepy Crawlers

This is the time of year where the garden isn't always looking its best. Some of the reasons are because of creepy crawlers. You know them by their wake of destruction. In the Learning Garden this week we had a couple different crawlers. First - Fall Webworms. Hyphantria cunea (Drury) They eat the leaves leaving bare bones of a leaf in their path.

It almost looks as if they are inside the leaf structure.

Here is a bowl full of nasty. Azalea caterpillars can clean off the foliage on an azalea in short time.

Here is a cluster of caterpillars on the pyracantha bush. Can't make a sure ID on this group. Will keep checking. If someone knows...let me know so I can update the info.

Found this cicada shell on the underside of a leaf, beautifully backlit.

This pretty guy was hovering high above my head as I left the garden.

Then when I got home, this is what I found.

Mr. Grasshopper eating my hibiscus.


  1. It's good that I've had my dinner already! The shots are good, but some creatures .... brrrrr!

  2. Love the grasshopper photo.

    I'm not sure what to say about the bowl of caterpillars. Add milk and fruit for a balanced breakfast?

  3. Aggravating is what they are! The web caterpillars eat up my River Birches.

  4. That bunch of caterpillars is like an army, coming in for a big feast. Quite scary .....

  5. Other than Crape Myrtles, this neighborhood is full of Oaks. Right now under each of them are tons of minature olive-green hand grenades. They are little turds from Red Oak Caterpillars. The never seem to permanently damage the tree, but do make them ugly. BTW, you have had prettier pictures on your blog!

  6. Those first two pictures of the webworms are waaay cool! I can't be sure but it looks like some type of sawfly is eating your pyracantha. They arch up when disturbed which is a characteristic of them. They devastated my birch tree not once but TWICE last summer. I used insecticidal spray on them. They made a small appearance this year but I quickly took care of them. Some sources say they don't do much damage-can't tell me that. I have never seen azaleas caterpillars here. That is a good thing I think but I'll be on the lookout. Great info!

  7. I've seen some signs of fall web worms in my Pecan. The creepy crawlies are out all right. I've been picking tomato hornworms off my plants left & right, yuck!

  8. 'Tis the season alright. The turds(Les said it first,lol) are the grossest part of these creepy crwlers everywhere. Wish I had taken a picture of the odd little cat(?) that defoliated a potted rose yesterday but he's toast now.

  9. wow this is first time i am seeing loads of caterpillars at one place. the gross hopper pic is just excellent.

  10. WOWZERS! Cool bugs, Aunt Janet!
    Play bows,

  11. Not my favorite time of year in the gardens. Everything looking kind of tired. Can't wait to put some mums in and get my fall wreaths up on my front door. I'm done with summer (what little we actually did have of it!) Cool pics, doll.

  12. Oh my goodness, Janet, you need to have a warning before reading this post! Triple yuck! The worms are awful, especially the azalea ones, they had better not come near by precious deciduous azaleas! But the grasshoppers have been voracious this year, leaving nothing unbit. The dahlias seems to be having the worst of it. I hate them. :-(


  13. ugh those caterpillers are so creepy, especially en mas!!!

  14. Hi Tatyana, I know, kind of an icky posting! glad you ate already too.

    Hi WiseAcre, Milk and fruit would be a great way to round out the meal!?!?!? You nut!

    Hi Anna, It is aggravating indeed.

    Hi Bangchik, It is an army of insects...ugh!

    Hi Les, green turd hand granades, nice visual. (!) I will try to have some prettier pictures next posting. ;-)

    Hi Tina, I looked up pics on the sawfly cat and mine don't seem to have dots/spots so I am not sure if that is what they are. We have had a few different years where we had lots of the azalea cat's in the LG.

    Hi Racquel, I have only had the one hornworm on my far. Hope to not have anymore.

    Hi Littlewing, and oh what a season! (and yes, Les has a way with words!) I keep hoping the birds are getting a belly full of these icky guys!

    Hi Muhammad, welcome! I was surprised how nicely the grasshopper picture came out. He was a big one! We get the big groups of caterpillars in the spring and the fall.

    Hi K- bugs are interesting.

    Hi Susie Q- I know, the mums will perk things back up. Glad you liked my pics. :-D

    Hi Frances, Sorry to gross you out a bit. I have been seeing the little green grasshoppers, but this guy was really big and hungry!

    Hi Ginger, imagine walking through the pathway and walking under a group of them. Phantom bug feelings in your hair!!!

  15. Janet, Those worms are high in the 'that is creepy' zone! Creepy and yucky aside the photos are way good! This seems to be the summer of the grasshoppers here in my garden! They or something else that I can't spot has skeletonized my Kopper King hibiscus and seem to be eating the salvia buds! I am mad! gail

  16. That grasshopper photo is fantastic! At least you seem willing to share :)

  17. Creepy isn't the word! Webworms are just plain disgusting. We had some here a few years ago and I just wanted to throw up when I saw them doing their thing up close and personal.

    I like insects quite a bit, but some are just yukky. LOL.

  18. Hi Gail, doesn't that make you mad when you can't find who is eating your plants!

    Hi Meredith, welcome! I was pretty amazed with the grasshopper photo.

    Hi Kylee, disgusting is a better word! yes, these are yucky!

  19. Great photos of the grasshopper and the dragonfly, Janet! The other creepy crawlers are just plain creepy:) I definitely don't want to see any of those fall webworms here.

    Enjoyed your meme on Friday; I always wondered about your ballet connection. I'm not sure I could do even "Adult Remedial Ballet":) I'm starting my third year of Tai Chi on Wednesday and still haven't mastered one whole routine!

  20. Oh Janet, all I can say is EWWWWWWWWWWWWW!

  21. I will be having nightmares for days to come! Those first 2 picks are super massively creepy! We have been fighting all manner of bad bugs this summer in our Seattle garden.

  22. Hi Rose, I like seeing the insects when the photo is enlarged, kind of interesting.
    Glad you liked the Meme. Ballet starts again next week...been a long month without!

    Hi Diana, bugs are that!

    Hi Teresa, welcome to my blog. Come back again when it isn't creepy crawlers!

    Hi Curmudgeon, haven't seen you around for a while... and you picked the bug posting to return! Been an interesting summer for all sorts of critters.

  23. So that's what those are! Fall webworms. I have them all over my birch. I've been debating - I hate to kill them or use pesticides, so it's a relief they generally won't harm the tree. I think I could stomach opening up the web and letting nature get them if it will. I wonder if a strong shot from a hose would help with the webs that are out of reach. Thanks for the lesson! And that grasshopper photo is fab. He's a handsome fellow, even if he's naughty eating the plants.

  24. Hi Megan, so sorry you have Fall webworms. They are sure icky. I would not recommend spraying them with water--nor pesticides. Extension recommendation is to cut them out whenever possible. If you hit them with the hose, you have just sent them to new places to eat and populate.


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