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Intrepid Gardener: FAIL

September 29, 2010
by

While I would not exactly use the term “afraid” to describe my relationship to the likes of slugs and snails and, yeah, caterpillars, (though for some reason earthworms don’t bother me, go figure) I would certainly proclaim that I am Not A Fan.  And being Not A Fan makes it somewhat challenging at times for the aspiring organic gardener in me.

This morning I set out to do battle with the strange spiky weird aphid like critters on my pepper plants and the true aphids on my coriander/cilantro.  I pulled out the worst offending and most decimated plants, mixed up some castile soap spray, and dusted with diatomaceous earth.  But my battles with the little guys is a post for another day.

Whilst picking through my coriander plants to see what the extent of the problem was, I ran across a few teeny green caterpillars.  Now any grower of tomatoes knows that you can expect to find ginormous horned green caterpillars on your tomatoes at any given time.  But these were teeny guys and I picked them off like a champ, so proud of myself for not cowering from the two, maybe three millimeter long wildlife in my garden.

Then I saw this:

At first I thought it must be a mouse pellet, the thing was huge!  But upon further inspection I noticed regular ridges along the sides, and recent searches through types of pest dung images on google have taught me that this is caterpillar poo.  But what kind of caterpillar could possibly lay a turd like THAT?  I glanced around briefly and came face to face with this:

What. The. Eff?  I’m sorry to say, dear fearless gardener friends, I shrieked.  I did.

But COME ON.  It’s, like, at LEAST three, nay, six! inches long and as big around as my damn leg. It was like a boa constrictor and jabba the hut’s lovechild!  only green!  ack!

And… *sigh* … dear friends, while I would love to tell you that I fought back my supreme dislike (fear) of most things creepy crawly and pulled that sucker off my beautiful plant?  I cannot tell a lie.  He’s still out there.  Maybe later I’ll drum up the nerve.  This battle may be lost, but the war wages on.

Jen’s inner sissy baby: 1

Jen’s inner organic gardener: 0

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