Tomato Worms - Knowledgebase Question

glendora, ca
Question by rich6814
August 28, 2006
What is the best way to prevent or get rid of tomato worms?


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Answer from NGA
August 28, 2006

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Tomato hornworms can be 4-5 inches long at maturity, and seeing them can be quite a shock! Hornworms are the larvae of a large moth (Manduca, with a wingspan of 3 1/2 - 4 1/2 inches). The adult is attracted to tomatoes, eggplant, peppers, potatoes, dill, and various weeds. She lays her eggs on the host plant, the eggs hatch, and the larvae feed and feed. They have voracious appetities and can denude a tomato plant in a day! Handpicking is the best defense. You can use the botanical Bt (Bacillus Thuringiensis), which is a bacterium that acts as a stomach poison, and is quite effective against most caterpillars. To keep hornworms away from your tomato plants next year, try interplanting dill. (Hornworms like dill and are easier to see and remove on the wispy dill foliage.)

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