Sunday, June 14, 2009

Garden Insects

I considered myself lucky until this point for having only seen one SVB moth with little consequence. Today I chased one through the garden for a full 45 minutes if not more. Those suckers aren't like Japanese or click beetles. You come up on one of those, whisper, "Boo," and they freeze like an opossum in the headlights and fall into your cup of soapy water. These SVB moths are more like armadillo. You think they look complacent, but those suckers are fast and squirrely. I couldn't catch him to save my life, even with Benny Hill music playing in the background. I don't know what my goal was. I'd never catch him, but then I'd never tire him out or irritate him enough to leave, either. I suppose all I can do is deal with the aftermath, but those bushes are so huge that I can't get myself in there completely to look for those eggs. I'll keep hunting them, but I suppose it will be what it will be.

I couldn't get him to sit still, but I did manage to get some other pictures of insects in the garden.

This guy here looked scary, so I left him alone.

Here's one of the ladybug looking like creatures in the garden. I can't tell the difference yet between those that are good and those that look like ladybugs and are really bad. Anyone have any good instructions?

Here's another of those. Sorry about the bad focus. This one looked to be struggling with small white things all on its sides, underbelly and mouth. This little guy looked like a ladybug but was solid black with two red dots on either side.

Here's a spotted cucumber beetle right before he met his untimely end in my cup of soapy water.

Can anyone identify these eggs? I have a huge Japanese beetle issue, and I figured they were Japanese beetle eggs, but don't they lay on the ground? These are everywhere, on the ground and on the leaves. I pick them as I find them, but you can't keep up.

I've also got fuzzy white and fuzzy tan egg sacs, black orbs that look like peppercorns and this red clay like dust in various partical size everywhere. Any idea what these may be or if they're dangerous?

Ahhh...for the bee. I've got a few of these that stay all day long. They're real powerhouses.

Here's one of my many spiders.

And that, my friends, is that. You know, I'm out there 5-6 times a day, seriously, and I get a dozen Japanese beetles, a few click beetles and cucumber beetles each time. We're going to a wedding this weekend and I'm terrified about what two days without tending, let alone a full week in July when we go on vacation, will do in the pest department. I'm half serious about buying a bolt of tulle and covering the garden entirely.

The morning comes early. Sweet bug catching dreams.


  1. Hi Ribbit!

    That's a good idea to have a cup of soapy water handy to catch those bad bugs.

    I've found some little grasshoppers in my beds... which really scares me cause they just eat up leaves!

    Here in Wyoming, grasshoppers are a real problem... makes me want to have chickens that I can let loose... so they can gobble them up!

  2. "I've also got fuzzy white and fuzzy tan egg sacs, black orbs that look like peppercorns and this red clay like dust in various partical size everywhere. Any idea what these may be or if they're dangerous?"

    Ribbit, when I read this, I fell out of my chair in a fit of laughter. I said to myself, "Gee, I wonder if she's seen a doctor for her condition. I hope she's not contagious". I have tears rolling down my cheeks. I know, I'm a sick puppy ;-D

  3. HA! Granny, you're as sick as they come. Now I'm laughing and snorting like a fool.

    Isolated like that it does sound like I'm giving a list of maladies.

    And yes, I've seen a doctor. :)
    And I could make more comments, but my mother reads this.

  4. Thanks, Dan! Coming from you, it's an amazing compliment. Your photography is amazing!

  5. Toni, I had that one monster grasshopper-alien-thingy the other day and today I had a medium sized brown one but that sucker was fast!

    I can't believe you have the time to manage THREE blogs, Toni. You're a powerhouse.

  6. This post helped me out a lot, along with the previous post from Dan, in identifying some bugs that I had questions about.

    i'm going to try a tray of beer in my collard green bed to deter slugs. I hear that they smell the beer and head straight for their liquid demise. Ever tried this?

  7. I've never tried the beer traps, but I've heard they work. I've always just gotten out there and hand picked them off.

  8. Hi Ribbit!

    How can you tell the difference between a ladybug and a cucumber beetle?

  9. Hi mombreeze, Ladybugs tend to be round and red, whereas the spotted cucumber beetle's body is oval and yellowish in color. Get them if you can. Try to knock them off in a cup of soapy water.

  10. Thanks Ribbit!

    Now that I'm thinking of it. The ladybug has a black and white head and the cucumber beetle does not. Am I right?? In which case I think my little cucumbers are safe!!