Wasps! It works

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  • #37631


    In reply to all the phone calls, personal comments and emails I get about not having caterpillars, e.g. “the Monarchs are visiting but there’s no eggs/caterpillars” I suggest that they throw an old net curtain over the swan plant and see if they get caterpillars.

    I never hear back that it works, but was really irritated last week when a man phoned me again and hadn’t done as I suggested – but he still had no caterpillars. So I decided I would prove it to myself. And it DOES work.

    I have just removed such a net and there were three huge caterpillars on the plant underneath, also a wasp in there, and lots of evidence of where caterpillars had been but been eaten. So those three “survivors” were moved to the butterfly house, but they could easily have stayed there, pupated in safety and then I would have hopefully heard the “flutter” of a Monarch in a couple of weeks.

    So please, if you have no eggs/caterpillars try this trick and see if it works for you. So you’re putting the net over theplant on Day 0, Day 5 any eggs will be emerging, Day 10 you should be able to see reasonable size caterpillars. It doesn’t have to be “watertight” or whatever the expression would be, just enough to prevent the wasps from flying all around in the plant. Better still if it IS 100% secure of course, but difficult.

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  • #38433



    Mosquito nets are very good for this purpose. Even if you throw the net over the plants, the butterfly finds the net/plants and will lay her eggs on the net. The baby caterpillars hatch and somehow find their way to the plant leaves – or you can help them by hatching the eggs inside your house and put the baby caterpillars on the plants under the net.

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