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Wednesday, June 9, 2010

Guess Who Came For Dinner

I was beginning to wonder if I was going to see any Monarch caterpillars on the Milkweed this year. But finally, my patience was rewarded...

I've got several Milkweeds in the garden.  Some that I purchased online and some that self-seeded from last year's plants.  With all those milkweeds, I was anxious to see some caterpillars.

Finally, when we got back from Indy I noticed one caterpillar, just one.  I've been keeping an eye on him each day and yesterday I was happy to notice there were two caterpillars on the plant.

And then today, I counted FOUR!  Wierd thing is that they're all on one plant, as are a bunch  of aphids - ewwwwwww.  The others are devoid of caterpillars.

Interestingly, the plants without the caterpillars are also sans aphids at the moment, but I don't know how long that will last, there seems to be nothing that can be done about them without risk to the caterpillars.

But hey - at least the aphids are the same color as the flowers and, from a distance, you can't even tell!!

Now, I have a question for you all.  As I was examining the grapes on our grape vine, I noticed this caterpillar.  Does anyone know what it is?

Words and photographs by Jayne Wilson, Green and Serene, Jayne's Country Garden.


Van said...

I haven't seen that gray beastie, but man, those monarch caterpillars love to devour milkweed. We come to expect it every year. Just stay away from my tomatoes, ya bastards :)

Kyna said...

Do monarch caterpillars ONLY hang out on milkweed? I'm definitely not in the know lol.

And I have no idea what the other caterpillar is. :)

Jayne said...

As far as I know, they only hang out on Milkweed, Kyna. They strip it bare, so put it in an area of the garden that you don't mind looking a little ragged, lol.

Jayne said...

I don't mind the other caterpillar eating the grape leaves, as long as he doesn't eat the GRAPES.

Corner Gardener Sue said...

Congrats on the monarch caterpillars! I don't know what the other one is. Maybe you could do a search on caterpillars that eat grape vines. It is a cool looking thing. I remember last year, getting an assortment of caterpillars eating different plants, people online would tell me that they won't kill the plant, and they were right. I think I'd not want them eating my grapes, either.

My monarchs keep disappearing. I have a feeling they are being eaten or killed by a variety of predators. I had one today that looked to be hanging getting ready to form a chrysalis, but later, it was gone. I may get a couple sleeves to put over a few stems to keep some safe.

Catherine@AGardenerinProgress said...

The caterpillars are as pretty as the butterflies! We don't have Monarchs here and I sure wish we did. I haven't seen any butterflies around so far. I wonder if you'll find the caterpillars in their chrysalis' in your yard soon?