Collectively, caterpillars are the larval stage of moths and butterflies. Did you know that there are over 110,000 different kinds of caterpillars in the world? One of those species is the cutworms which are deemed one of the most destructive lawn pests. However, this is not the only caterpillar species that causes plant destruction. This destruction of your plants is why caterpillars are considered pests.
Caterpillar infestations begin at different times of the year, depending on the type of moth or butterfly. However, their reproductive cycle is not as exponential as Aphids. So, they compensate for this through their ravenous appetite.
These creatures have strong mandibles. This gives them the ability to cause exceptional damage to plants. They can thoroughly cut the stems off. Plus, they can gnaw on the edges of the leaves, causing the distorted and lace-like appearance of the plant. If not treated immediately, this could lead to more extensive damage to your lawn.
How to Eliminate Caterpillars without Pesticides
Many people believe that pesticides are essential to the well-being of plants. However, we should consider how threatening it is to our health as human beings. For one, the residue of pesticides can settle on the water sources and other food sources. This puts countless people in danger of acquiring several diseases such as food poisoning, organ failure, and cancer.
This is the reason why farmers recommend natural methods of pest control. One way to eliminate them is to handpick caterpillars and their eggs one by one. If you don’t want to squish them, simply put it in water mixed with dish soap. Check your plants and daily for any sign of caterpillar infestation, and do this process regularly.
Another way to control caterpillar infestation is by attracting beneficial insects and animals that feed on these grubs. These include birds, nuthatches, orioles, and warblers. If you attract enough insects to help eliminate caterpillars, you’ll be getting rid of the infestation in no time.
Experts also recommend discouraging caterpillar activity by applying alternate rows of vegetable types. Rotate your crops every season to avoid nourishing caterpillars in your garden. In severe infestations, you can create your own chili spray to control their population.
Chili Spray Recipe for Caterpillar Pests
First, add 3 and ½ ounces of dried chili in a food processor. Mix the powder with ½ gallon of boiling water. Stir it for about 5 minutes then add ½ gallon of cold water and two to three drops of liquid soap. Stir the mixture until it cools then spray it on a leaf and wait 24 hours for testing. If the leaf shows no reaction, you can spray the chili mixture on your plants every evening.
These are only a few of the best remedies to get rid of caterpillars on your lawn. If you apply these methods regularly, you will not only eliminate caterpillars but also prevent their infestation. Start now and make a difference.