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Old June 12, 2016   #1
JLJ_
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Default Four O Clocks and Hornworms

I've grown Four O Clocks in the past, and they did OK -- never seemed to come back well, just grew as annuals, though I was growing them in a warmer area than this -- but I was also even more frantically busy then and perhaps they didn't get enough care.

I suspect that they'd grow here as long as I dug the tubers in fall -- and abundant flowering in mid-late summer, especially once I had grown tubers to replant, is attractive -- but I'm somewhat concerned about who all they might attract.

I gather from discussions I've seen concerning them that they vary widely in fragrance. Whether this variation is due to genetic properties of the particular seed/strain planted or to some aspect of growing conditions I don't know. Does anyone?

And . . . if they did produce the delightful fragrance many report . . . how bad are they about attracting pregnant tomato hornworm parents to the area? Anyone noticed?

I've never had a hornworm problem -- but I believe the parent moth is generally listed as living throughout the 48 states as well as in southern Canada and parts of Mexico -- so I don't think I can't count on their not coming here unless they have an aversion to altitude?

And we don't have roadrunners to deal with them. Lots of magpies, which would probably like them, but I'm not sure they're adapted to tomato hornworm hunting.

Last edited by JLJ_; June 12, 2016 at 09:58 AM.
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Old June 12, 2016   #2
Tracydr
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I was thinking it was tobacco ( nicotania) that attracts hornworms.
I bet Remy knows. Maybe send her a message?
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Old June 12, 2016   #3
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Four O'Clocks are a nectar source for the hornworm moth adult, but I'm not sure I would let that keep me from enjoying them.
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Old June 12, 2016   #4
Labradors2
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Four O'Clocks are supposed to kill Japanese Beetles! Too bad I never remember to plant the seeds early enough......

Linda
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Old June 12, 2016   #5
Tracydr
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Labradors2 View Post
Four O'Clocks are supposed to kill Japanese Beetles! Too bad I never remember to plant the seeds early enough......

Linda
Okay,planting those next year for sure now!
I must have picked 100 of them off the asparagus this weekend.
Cool though that I got to see an assassin bug kill and eat one!
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Old June 12, 2016   #6
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There are a lot of horn worm type worms out there not all of them eat tomato plants.
They have certain things they are attracted to and that is it.

Plus there is the tomato horn worm and the tobacco horn worm both will eat tomato plants but they aren't the same worm.
The moths even look somewhat like each other for many of these worms but they have slight variations to them.

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Old June 12, 2016   #7
Lastfling
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Labradors2 View Post
Four O'Clocks are supposed to kill Japanese Beetles! Too bad I never remember to plant the seeds early enough......

Linda


Hmmmm, wonder if the one I saw on my Four O'Clocks this morning had a death wish 😄
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Old June 13, 2016   #8
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Japanese beetles are attracted to Four O'Clocks and eating the plants are fatal to the beetles too. I plant Four O'Clocks up and down my drainage ditch to keep the JP's numbers down. It seems to work pretty darn well.

Moths in general are attracted to flowers with scent. There are many types of Sphinx Moths which the tomato hornworm is only one of them. Not all of them are pests and need to be destroyed. In fact I actually enjoy having most of them around. They are fun to watch hovering through my gardens.
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Old June 15, 2016   #9
clkeiper
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Quote:
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Japanese beetles are attracted to Four O'Clocks and eating the plants are fatal to the beetles too. I plant Four O'Clocks up and down my drainage ditch to keep the JP's numbers down. It seems to work pretty darn well.
I never have heard this. What a treasure trove of information.
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Old July 6, 2016   #10
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Well the Japanese Beetles have arrived in force here this week. I noticed one of my 4 O'Clocks was badly eaten. I looked under it and low and behold a pile of dead JB's. Yes! This is a plant for me.....
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Old July 7, 2016   #11
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That is so awesome. I have a linden tree and red raspberries. Those nasty beetles devour everything.. or at least ruin it so I still have to pick and toss the berries. wasteful! ... what a nuisance they are but at least they have abated somewhat.
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Old July 7, 2016   #12
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That is so awesome. I have a linden tree and red raspberries. Those nasty beetles devour everything.. or at least ruin it so I still have to pick and toss the berries. wasteful! ... what a nuisance they are but at least they have abated somewhat.


They all went to the sushi bar
.

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