October 10

Tuesday Treasures

Cross-striped cabbage worm

Cross-striped cabbage worm

“The Very Hungry Caterpillar”

“All that glisters is not gold.”   William Shakespeare

I’m afraid that this week’s entry must be filed under the “live and learn” category.  Our promising fall season has been all but obliterated by this handsome little guy, or I should say a battalion of these little guys – crossed-striped cabbage worms.  An enduring pest in southern gardens, the cabbage moth caterpillar eventually found its way to southern New England.  Usually cooler weather requires the use of a cloche (those mesh tunnels that protect our plants from nighttime temperatures.)  Since we’ve been enjoying an extended Indian summer, we didn’t set up the cloches, forgetting that the netting also protects plants from prolific egg-layers of all shapes and sizes.  Because we don’t use pesticides (not even ones rated for organic gardens) our usual battle game is to “squish” the foe.   Alas, we have lost the day.