Tomatoville® Gardening Forums


Notices

Information and discussion regarding garden diseases, insects and other unwelcome critters.

Reply
 
Thread Tools Display Modes
Old July 31, 2017   #1
TexasTomat0
Tomatovillian™
 
Join Date: Mar 2017
Location: Central Texas - Zone 8A
Posts: 64
Default Hornworms

I remember catching these guys when I was a kid, but have not seen them since.

It's amazing how fast they can eat through a plant. I walked out a couple days ago and noticed something had been munching, then today the entire top of the plant was gone and I noticed three of these monsters on there. It is my first encounter with them while growing my own tomatoes.

I have seen my dad grow tomatoes for years and never had any problems with hornworms, but somehow they made their way to my place.


Sent from my iPhone using Tapatalk
TexasTomat0 is offline   Reply With Quote
Old July 31, 2017   #2
HoustonHeat
Tomatovillian™
 
HoustonHeat's Avatar
 
Join Date: Apr 2017
Location: Houston Zone 9A
Posts: 109
Default

Yep. I am in Houston and I had a couple as well. I sacrificed a plant to watch it devour it and thought it would cocoon on a stem, but be aware they dig underground to cocoon and disappear. The young ones are black but smaller, the adults turn green as in your pic. I have not had further issues with them as you can simply remove the few you see by hand.
HoustonHeat is offline   Reply With Quote
Old July 31, 2017   #3
pmcgrady
Tomatovillian™
 
pmcgrady's Avatar
 
Join Date: Feb 2015
Location: Central Illinois
Posts: 949
Default

I'm now up to 16 hornworms I've pulled off off 6 plants, 4 of the plants are pretty much devoured.
pmcgrady is offline   Reply With Quote
Old July 31, 2017   #4
carolyn137
Tomatoville® Moderator
 
carolyn137's Avatar
 
Join Date: Jan 2006
Location: Upstate NY, zone 4b/5a
Posts: 20,044
Default

What should you know about hornworms as I learned myself years ago?

If you see any like this

https://www.google.com/search?hl=en&...k1.jCCmmAjUP7w

Then what you've got is this

https://www.google.com/search?q=horn...&bih=790&dpr=1

I very much like the idea of the worms being eviscerated,which is what happens.

Now if your hornworms aren't carrying around those wasp eggs,well, here's what I used to do. Pick off the leaf the hornworm is on and stomp it to death but beware that by smashing it it squirts out green innards,so stand back ASAP.

Carolyn
__________________
Carolyn
carolyn137 is offline   Reply With Quote
Old August 1, 2017   #5
pmcgrady
Tomatovillian™
 
pmcgrady's Avatar
 
Join Date: Feb 2015
Location: Central Illinois
Posts: 949
Default

Quote:
Originally Posted by carolyn137 View Post
What should you know about hornworms as I learned myself years ago?

If you see any like this

https://www.google.com/search?hl=en&...k1.jCCmmAjUP7w

Then what you've got is this

https://www.google.com/search?q=horn...&bih=790&dpr=1

I very much like the idea of the worms being eviscerated,which is what happens.

Now if your hornworms aren't carrying around those wasp eggs,well, here's what I used to do. Pick off the leaf the hornworm is on and stomp it to death but beware that by smashing it it squirts out green innards,so stand back ASAP.

Carolyn
LOL! The green innards stink too. Last year the hornworms had wasp eggs, but none this year... They have all got stomped to death.
pmcgrady is offline   Reply With Quote
Old August 1, 2017   #6
Salsacharley
Tomatovillian™
 
Salsacharley's Avatar
 
Join Date: May 2013
Location: New Mexico
Posts: 1,514
Default

Those green innards were your plants just a few minutes earlier.
Salsacharley is offline   Reply With Quote
Old August 3, 2017   #7
Father'sDaughter
Tomatovillian™
 
Join Date: Nov 2011
Location: MA/NH Border
Posts: 4,284
Default Hornworms

I never had them until today -- my one and only runt of a Melrose Pepper was totally stripped of leaves this morning and there was a pile of hornworm droppings piled all around the stem. It had just moved on to a neighboring Aleppo plant and was on it's second leaf when I found it. No wasp eggs, so it went bye-bye.

Tonight I took another swing through the garden just to check on things, and under a tomato plant I found some fresh droppings. I climbed up on a step stool to get a loser look, and there were two more in the process of chowing down on my Sulia's Heart. Luckily they hadn't gotten too far into their feast before they went bye-bye as well.

So I guess I'm worm hunting at least twice a day for the rest of the season...
Father'sDaughter is offline   Reply With Quote
Old August 15, 2017   #8
oakley
Tomatovillian™
 
oakley's Avatar
 
Join Date: Jun 2015
Location: NewYork 5a
Posts: 1,612
Default

Daily inspections and pics do tell all.
I snapped a quick pic of new-to-me TennesseeSuited so I could compare on Tatiana's
Database...(it was looking like a heart but it has some fluting so not a heart)

...and what do I see on my screen?
First hornworm that I know of in my garden. I do seem to get just about a few of
everything.
I suppose one means I probably have more?
Attached Images
File Type: jpg tenn suited.jpg (420.2 KB, 79 views)
oakley is offline   Reply With Quote
Old August 15, 2017   #9
TexasTomat0
Tomatovillian™
 
Join Date: Mar 2017
Location: Central Texas - Zone 8A
Posts: 64
Default

The 2 I posted were the first I had ever seen, but I did find 1 more the following day. Since then I haven't seen any more. Hopefully they were just passing through.
TexasTomat0 is offline   Reply With Quote
Old August 16, 2017   #10
Father'sDaughter
Tomatovillian™
 
Join Date: Nov 2011
Location: MA/NH Border
Posts: 4,284
Default

I also haven't seen any since those first three, but I still look every day.
Father'sDaughter is offline   Reply With Quote
Old August 16, 2017   #11
brownrexx
Tomatovillian™
 
brownrexx's Avatar
 
Join Date: Feb 2016
Location: Southeastern PA
Posts: 674
Default

I have not seen any on my tomatoes nor have I seen any of their damage but last evening I saw one on a pepper plant. However it was totally covered with wasp eggs so I just left it alone. It did not seem to be doing much.

I read on another site that tilling disrupts their life cycle by 90% and I do till once a year. A poster from one of the Dakotas quit tilling in her garden and after 2 years she had dozens of hornworms so she will be tilling in the Fall. Prior to that she never saw a hornworm.
brownrexx is offline   Reply With Quote
Old August 16, 2017   #12
agee12
Tomatovillian™
 
Join Date: Jul 2016
Location: Georgia
Posts: 79
Default

I've mellowed when it comes to hornworms. My understanding is that they come in two waves, spring and late summer/fall. I did not have a problem with them this past spring, and I have yet to spot one but I have seen signs, namely frass on my zinnias and some minor defoliation of tomatoes. The hornworms seem to prefer zinnia foliage to tomato foliage.

Hormworms don't bother me as much during their late summer/fall wave because by then the established tomato plants have plenty of foliage and again they seem to target the zinnias more. As far as I know they are not disease carriers.

I do have some younger plants and I am vigilant with those plants to make sure that a hormworm does not get to them. Some other pests, cutworms and slugs I suspect, have been more destructive a bigger threat and they seem to go after peppers and eggplants more than tomatoes.

Starting last fall I relocated my hornworms and even took my pruned tomato leaves to the relocation area. I got the sads when I noticed that a parasitic wasp had gotten to one of the hornworms.
agee12 is offline   Reply With Quote
Old August 17, 2017   #13
Nematode
Tomatovillian™
 
Join Date: May 2012
Location: massachusetts
Posts: 1,523
Default

Cardinals been stalking the garden. Hornworms disappear as soon after they arrive.
Cardinals sit on the trellis and watch. Good friends they are.
Nematode is offline   Reply With Quote
Old August 23, 2017   #14
oakley
Tomatovillian™
 
oakley's Avatar
 
Join Date: Jun 2015
Location: NewYork 5a
Posts: 1,612
Default

Interesting about Cardianals. I have a family sitting daily on my tomato trellis deck
fence.
But spotted another hornworm. So well hidden. I've been watching a few nice tomatoes,
DwarfMetalica. Missed this one all morning.
Has the beneficial larvae of the braconid wasp. I moved it to a host plant.
Attached Images
File Type: jpg Screen Shot 2017-08-23 at 2.31.55 PM.jpg (231.0 KB, 35 views)
oakley is offline   Reply With Quote
Old August 27, 2017   #15
Compuaide
Tomatovillian™
 
Join Date: Feb 2016
Location: New York 6b
Posts: 48
Default

I was sitting in a chair at the edge of the tomato trellis the other day and noticed 1 limb from the top of only 1 of my tomatoes had been stripped. I looked so hard for that green caterpillar but there was only that 1 limb of evidence trail to announce his arrival.

I came back out to look with a flashlight later that night but still no culprit and no new evidence.

That was 1 very fast bird because days later there is no caterpillar and no other damage to any plants.

Guess I have been lucky this year.
Compuaide is offline   Reply With Quote
Reply

Thread Tools
Display Modes

Posting Rules
You may not post new threads
You may not post replies
You may not post attachments
You may not edit your posts

BB code is On
Smilies are On
[IMG] code is On
HTML code is Off

Forum Jump


All times are GMT -4. The time now is 05:09 PM.


★ Tomatoville® is a registered trademark of Commerce Holdings, LLC ★ All Content ©2017 Commerce Holdings, LLC ★