How to Get Rid of Cabbage Worms
Cabbage worms, as the name suggests, are plant destroyers that generally target the cabbage family. These caterpillars developed from the eggs laid by the adult butterflies will eventually turn into larvae. This specie of pests is responsible for those Swiss cheese-like holes that you may see in your vegetables such us cauliflowers, and others among the cabbage family.
To prevent and control their damages, here are some helpful tips that you could follow:
No Eggs = No Worms
Of course, prevention is better than a cure. Protect your vegetables by setting up measures so adult butterflies cannot lay eggs on your crops. Cover the upper parts or the heads of the cabbages until harvest time with nylon stockings or nets so butterflies cannot go though. No eggs, no worms.
Remove the old ones
Do not mix the new sets of cabbages that you have with old ones. It has been noted that the other stages of the life cycle of the cabbage worms (larvae and pupae) may still take place on the debris of the previous sets of crops. By removing them, you may alter the life cycle of the worms and prevent new waves of these pests from pestering any soon.
Inspect the cabbage
Be sure to inspect your younger cabbage. These worms love to attack the younger cabbage plants before they attack the older plants. While these worms can kill younger cabbage plants, they more than likely just cause cosmetic damage to older cabbage. Be sure to inspect your cabbage for holes or even signs of worms. Most of the time, you can remove them manually and this can get rid of the problem.
Bring in the enemies
Attract the natural enemies of the cabbage worms. They can help get rid of cabbage worms fast. A lot of insects feed on cabbage worms such as spiders, beetles, wasps and many more. When you see these insects in your garden, do not kill them. Let nature take its course and give you the advantage.
When you find your cabbage, broccoli or kale plants with big holes in almost all leaves, cabbage worms are most likely to hold responsible. These creatures are caterpillars that can bore right through your cabbages. While they’re caterpillars, not worms, cabbage worms are partly true to their name: they indeed eat the plants leaves belonging to the cabbage family.
As with lots of other destructive insects in the vegetable garden, why don’t you first discover what their natural predators are? This will provide a huge leap on the process of doing away with such harmful little creatures. Thus assures your garden is secured without having to use hazardous insecticides that might kill beneficial insects too. Parasitic wasps, soldier bugs and lace wings, ground beetles, spiders, lacewings are some insects that are innate enemies of cabbage worms that prey on them.
Spray with BT
If plants are severely worm-infested and the condition is way out of control, spray them with Bt. This biological insecticide targets caterpillars and could come in handy in helping you solve your worm problems. When caterpillars consume parts of the cabbages that has been sprayed with Bt, they get infected and will eventually die.
Choose red over green
If you can’t handle any more stuff about getting rid of cabbage worms, you can also check out the red cabbages. They attract cabbage worms less and will surely cause you lesser problems.