Sunday, August 15, 2010

In the tomatoes....

Sometimes you don't have to go far to find something truly amazing. Look what we found today in our very own backyard.

A tobacco hornworm. Isn't he a beauty? Now before you get all freaked out and stop reading...let me tell you that this gorgeous fellow will soon transform into something even more amazing....a hummingbird moth! Have you ever seen one of those? They are really big and kinda furry and they can be found at evening time drinking nectar from flowers. Sometimes they are called hawk moths.
(underside view)
Now, I'll admit that I was a little freaked out to see this in my garden, because it had eaten two of my very large tomato plants. Grrr. It had eaten most of the leaves and even had taken giant chunks out of several large green tomatoes. I thought at first that the deer had somehow gotten into the fence. But upon closer look I found these.

Three of them. That big one is about four inches long.
Anyway...we've decided to keep them. No, really. Because wouldn't it be cool to see them turn into moths?
We're feeding them, and have put them into an aquarium filled with several inches of dirt, because when they're ready they'll fall to the ground and bury themselves while they pupate. Then one to three weeks later they should turn into a moth (i read they have a 5 inch wingspan!) And we'll release them. I hope it works. At any rate it's better than squishing them. Or feeding them to the chickens. Which one of my boys may have wanted to do. Sensitive isn't he?
And as a treat for making it this far in a post all about a giant squishy looking worm.....
Take a peak at these sunflowers that grew naturally under the bird feeders. I love watching things grow.


  1. have to know how FREAKIN EXCITED I AM ABOUT THAT!!!!!! how very very cool. and possibly worth two tomato plants, though i won't argue that one very far...totally thrilling. yay for keeping them!!!!

  2. hi dear one!

    thought I'd let you know that this morning (the very next morning after getting them!) the biggest one has crawled into the ground and started his transformation! the boys are so excited! :)