Great plant..no caterpillars?

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  • #13450

    Anonymous
    Inactive

    I have a 2 year old plant in a great warm location. It has really grown this last year to the point where I had to prune the top off. The problem is we have no caterpillars.

    There are eggs & they hatch. But within a day or 2 they are all gone.

    I have transplanted some bigger caterpillars from another plant at my friends house & the smaller ones die cause they won’t eat my plants???? The larger ones eat a small amount then cacoon??? What is wrong with my plants???

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  • #19737

    Jacqui
    Moderator

    You can see pictures of this pest here – June is wondering if they ARE mozzies or perhaps another lookalike – we’ll find out for you if we can and keep you posted.

    Monarch killer pix

    #19736

    hshingles
    Participant

    Jacqui, I had wondered about the mossies as I had a few caterpillars in the back porch, only 1 survived to turn into a butterfly.
    As I have a hedge and lots of bromeliads, this place can be a mossie city on its own.
    Heather

    #19731

    Charlotte
    Participant

    Hi Jacqui,

    Yes I did and I thought “oh no not another predator” to look out for. I tell you this year I have learnt so much about all the predators, etc. Its been great!!.

    I have ants on some of my plants also. Have tried the cornflour but not sure if it worked. I still have over 80% of my feeding stock here.

    Now that I have all these rescued pillars here the wasps have come back and constantly hang about the netted plants, waiting for a pillar to go onto the netting!! Then whamo they get them. Or they will chew or try to find a way through the netting to them. Hope it stops soon.

    I am going to go back to collecting eggs soon and do mine that way to get them through.

    Do see the wasps nectaring on the bloodflowers, so wish they would just do that!!.

    Cheers
    Charlotte

    #19727

    Jacqui
    Moderator

    Hi Heather, Char – see my post this morning about \”mosquitoes\”. Perhaps this is what is getting them? Over the past six weeks I have rescued some plants, a few eggs on them, and have moved quite a few caterpillars onto them. However, I don\’t seem to be getting many butterflies or pupae/chrysalises (mind you I\’m only home at weekends). There are lots of ants on the plants, though – so my suspicion is ants. The plants I have rescued have definitely not been sprayed.

    Locally wasps now seem to be nectaring off the flowers, when I see them about milkweed bushes.

    A mystery!

    #19725

    Charlotte
    Participant

    Hi,

    I have monarchs visiting and laying eggs and 2 males patrolling the plants out the back. I have at least 20 plants out the back and like your mum Heather, mine all still have lots of luscious leaves for pillars. I have the odd pillar making it through, and when I spot them I move them to the butterfly house or under my netted plants for a while.

    Cheers
    Charlotte

    #19723

    hshingles
    Participant

    hi galaga, the same has is happening to my mum’s plants.There are 4-5 large plants her drive is like an avenue of swan plants with al the seedlings. normally there are loads of monarchs at all stages ,but this year hardly one gets past the hatched stage. I don’t think the ones I have rescued from work have survived either.
    Leave the plant and next year may be better, hopefully.
    Heather

    #19714

    swivel
    Participant

    I have just done a tour of 150 plus large plants 2 metres plus, 18 caterpillers, lots of b/flies nectoring on flowers, few eggs, 2 shield bugs, 1 mantis, some bees, no wasps—it is late in the day. Two sucked out pillers.

    These plants produced thousands of mature cats in the period till 10–15 Feb, my observations are that there has been good spread of male/female. One area has been predated quite badly with shield bugs, ironically it is that area that still has 17 of the 18 cats. There hasn’t been heavey wasp activity that I have seen. Two to three weeks ago there were a lot of eggs evident that didn’t seem to come to anything.

    I have no idea what is going on but wonder if the b/flies are in fact infertile for some reason. 50 odd of these plants I would observe half a dozen times a day as I walk past to and from work, certainly I would notice any significant preditor activity. ?????? Neil

    #19688

    Jacqui
    Moderator

    Hope that before you do you’ll try the isolation test for wasps/predators, e.g. by covering part of it with a sleeve and checking in a week to see if you have caterpillars on it.

    Hope so! Sounds like a great plant.

    Jacqui

    #19684

    Anonymous
    Inactive

    I am in the Horowhenua. The plant is in a great location & no spraying that I know of. It is huge (6-7 feet tall) to the point where I am feeding friends caterpillars with branches that I cut off. Still no caterpillars????? Not sure what is wrong with it. Might get rid of it & replant new ones????

    #19621

    Jacqui
    Moderator

    Hello Galaga

    I suggest that you cover a part of the plant with an old curtain or sleeve of netting – and see if the caterpillars thrive on that. I would suspect that you have a wasp problem (or other predator). What area do you live in? It would be good to hear from other people in your immediate neighbourhood.

    Jacqui

    #19620

    macmonkey
    Participant

    Hi galaga,
    has anyone been spraying in your area, a neighbour perhaps?

    cheers Stu

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