Washington Township, NJ
|Looking for an organic solution to worms on my tomato plants.
|Answer from NGA
August 31, 1999
|Tomato hornworms are a common pest of tomato plants and they're large enough to be handpicked and destroyed. Other worms can cause problems on tomatoes as well, including corn earworms and cutworms. Aside from handpicking and destroying, you can dust them with the botanical Bt (Bacillius Thuringensis). This bacterium acts as a stomach poison to the worms but they need to keep feeding until they ingest enough to kill them. If you have a variety of flowers in bloom all through the seasons you'll attract predatory insects such as Braconid and Trichogramma wasps. Both of these tiny wasps lay eggs in or on the bodies of caterpillars and worms. When the eggs hatch the larvae feed on the insides of the worms. Pretty convenient, I'd say!
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