passionfruit anyone…?

  • This topic is empty.
  • Creator
    Topic
  • #13333

    zoe9
    Participant

    The other day I bought a passionfruit vine from the garden section at Mitre 10. I have nowhere suitable to plant it and I’m not sure what I will do with it at this stage.

    So why did I buy it? Because it had a newly formed chrysalis on it. And why was there a newly formed chrysalis on it? Because it was right next to the baby swan plants and big surprise, they weren’t covered and eggs had been laid.

    I’m too much of a softie. Seeing that beautiful chrysalis and not knowing what would happen to it worried me and I knew I couldn’t leave it on the shelf. I also for a moment considered gathering up all the pillars I could see and bringing them home so they’d be safe too, but even I knew that wasn’t feasible.

    Anyway I hope everyone is having a good season so far. Right now I have around 60 chrysalis and another 60 odd caterpillars. My idea to protect them this year from wasps and other nasties by getting hubby to build lots of netted enclosures was a little too successful because my plant supply is getting low and I just feel I have way too many right now. My own fault of course for not being more vigilant with the egg-squishing. Honestly, you’d think I would have learnt by now hey. Ah well….

Viewing 15 replies - 1 through 15 (of 15 total)
  • Author
    Replies
  • #19142

    zoe9
    Participant

    Thank you Swansong. And yes, hubby does have his uses!

    Meanwhile that netting I used I just picked up for $3 a metre from a cheapie fabric shop. Bargain!

    Hope all is going well with you.

    I am pleased to report my plants are growing back nicely and I’m top of the egg squishing so I don’t foresee any more problems with hungry pillars and dwindling food supplies which is a relief.

    As for working from home and watching pillars it sure is a conflict of interest. Last year it was too stressful because I found myself peering anxiously out the window every 5 minutes looking for wasps. Having the pillars this year safely in their enclosures is a HUGE weight off !

    Cheers,
    Zoe

    #19103

    Swansong
    Participant

    Lovely piks zoe. Your hubby looks like a great carpenter, and your pillar traps look like they would not only keep them safe from the lawn crossings but lessen the liklihood of attacks from undesirables. Good to see the improvising and ideas that people come up with.

    YOur enclosures look GREAT! I wished now that I had used some type of finer netting to cover my tunnell like enclosure, but I was concerned about it blocking too much light out, so I brought bird netting which doesnt stop the nasties like wasps.

    Haha … working from home and watching ‘pillars … mmm could be a conflict of interest there!

    Cheers
    Swansong

    #19099

    zoe9
    Participant

    Thank you Jacqui !

    Thank you also Jean for your comment. You’re referring to the big enclosure? If yes then you’re right, I do put the pillars in there.

    My garden is a bit all over the place and I have plants growing in several different areas. Some can be easily covered, such as the plants in the photo, but others can’t simply because of their location.

    Anyway, all my big pillars were moved to the enclosure in the photo a day or two prior to changing. There are actually 5 swan plants in this enclosure (hard to tell from the photo because in it they’re stripped) so there was enough food for them to finish up eating first. I did it this way so I could keep track of all the chrysalides.

    They were moved there from other enclosures which hold the smaller pillars. These enclosures have a combination of planted and potted plants in them. Again the pillars were moved into them either via a potted plant that was left exposed so eggs could be laid, or moved as babies (leaf and all!) from any uncovered plants.

    Early and late season I’m happy to leave the pillars in the exposed garden (which is when I use the ‘pillar catchers’) but when the wasps start coming out in force and I start to see baby praying mantis everywhere then it’s into the enclosures they go, otherwise I spend the whole day obsessively checking them which is NOT conducive to a good day at work ! (I work from home.)

    #19084

    jean
    Participant

    Hi Zoe,
    I have just looked at your photos, what a fantastic idea. I feel a bit daft asking this but how do you know when to put them in there? I presume that is how they get in. Ummm . Jean

    #19083

    Jacqui
    Moderator

    They arrived just fine, Zoe, and I’m uploading them now. Some great photographs of interesting subjects here, folks – check out the entries on:

    https://www.monarch.org.nz/category/photographs/

    Note: Click on the heading, when you mouse over it you will see it’s a hyperlink to the actual photograph.) (PS The website is being upgraded at present, so bear with us if things don’t work as well as they should.)

    #19078

    zoe9
    Participant

    Thanks for letting me know Jacqui.

    Have just resent now to both addresses.

    Any problems receiving again please let me know.

    Cheers,
    Zoe

    #19059

    Jacqui
    Moderator

    No, Zoe. Nothing has arrived. 🙁 Try sending them again, photos@monarch.org.nz and copy to jacqui@monarch.org.nz please. I suggest in groups of one or two – keep the “pillar catchers” together and other things that are relevant together.

    Hope they arrive and I will post them as soon as I see them.

    Cheers

    Jacqui

    #19055

    zoe9
    Participant

    Hi Jacqui

    Just letting you know I sent those photos through on Thursday. Are you able to let me know if they arrived please? I had a few problems with my email provider whilst sending, plus I realised afterwards that I’d missed a couple when I was resizing so it would have been quite a large attachment (oops) and I’m not sure if you block emails of a certain size from being received.

    Cheers,
    Zoe

    #18952

    zoe9
    Participant

    Sorry for the late reply. Jacqui I’ve taken some photos of the pillar ‘catchers’ and will get them emailed shortly along with a few others I thought might be interesting.

    Meanwhile today my Mitre 10 butterfly hatched – a lovely girl. It’s been a busy couple of days. Yesterday I had 13 butterflies hatch, today I had 42(!)emerge and a quick head count reveals tomorrow I have another 20 + due (I stopped counting after 20.)

    That’s over 70 eggs laid in the space of a few days that I allowed to hatch. It’s no wonder my plants are stripped bare and my remaining pillars are being forced to eat moth plant. Very VERY bad.

    So let this be a lesson in what NOT to do. Do not allow yourself to get complacent – egg squishing is a serious business with no time off for good behaviour!

    Cheers,
    Zoe 🙂

    #18907

    Swansong
    Participant

    Hi zoe,

    “I was lulled into a false sense of security by all my “back-up” plants in pots (some 6 feet tall) and didn’t squish nearly as many eggs as I should have so I have too many pillars once again.”

    Oh well, at least youre in an area where theres likely to be more enthusiasts you can call on.

    Your device sounds intersting! Love to see it. Mine dont get to schlepp themselves across the lawn anymore, as they are all brought inside as fatties so they can do their thing without getting picked off outside by who knows what.

    Cheers
    Swansong

    #18905

    Jacqui
    Moderator

    PHotographs please Zoe! These can be emailed to photos@monarch.org.nz. Can’t wait to see them, I LOVE NEW IDEAS. 🙂

    Jacqui

    #18904

    zoe9
    Participant

    Ha, thanks Jacqui. There is at least one thing I planned that has worked very well and that’s the “pillar catchers” I had hubby build. They’re wood structures with netting that act as a barricade between the planted area of garden and the actual lawn.

    Last year I spent the entire season scanning the front lawn for any stray pillars and being too nervous really to even walk on it . Plus it was very stressful if anyone unexpectedly dropped in and cut across the lawn to reach the front door. I’d have to stop myself calling out “FREEZE ! Mind the pillars!’ and then racing out like a crazy person to do an inspection of the grass before they could proceed.

    So the idea was to catch any silly fat pillars heading off that way to make their chrysalis plus any others who might be wandering off for whatever reason.

    Anyway they’ve worked a treat. Just 24 hours after putting them down I found two lovely fatties making their J in one. So much better knowing they’re safely in the catchers than crawling merrily toward the footpath !

    #18877

    Jacqui
    Moderator

    Ah, but Zoe you’re better off than if you hadn’t had a plan!

    J.

    #18872

    zoe9
    Participant

    Hi Swansong! Hope all is going well and happy new year to you :).

    Anyhow, mitre 10. Not particularly helpful. There was a staff member working nearby and I pointed the chrysalis out to him. He wasn’t the least bit surprised because he knew they were selling plants the week before with caterpillars on them. I told him that one single pillar would decimate the entire plant it was on (bearing in mind they were only around 15 cms tall). His reaction? He disagreed and tried to tell me they hadn’t actually done much ‘damage’. Honestly it’s so frustrating because some of these people who buy single plants have no idea how quickly they will get eaten and if they were to ask this guy for assistance he’d probably be giving them all manner of incorrect info. As for covering the plants I may as well have been talking to a brick wall. It doesn’t hinder the business any if eggs get laid because the plants still get sold so they don’t care.

    As for the chrysalis I asked if he could move the passionfruit plant off the shelf till it hatched. I told him in this weather it’d be out in just a week or two, but he wasn’t really interested. He did humour me in that he moved it to the back of the display but as the display was only 3 plants deep it barely made a difference.

    I was getting nowhere so thanked him (just to be polite, not because he actually did anything that deserved a thank you!) and went to find my husband but I kept on thinking about the chrysalis so went back 5 minutes later and got it. As you do.

    Meanwhile my season is already out of control – seriously, I could kick myself. This year I was supposed to be so well organised, there would be no shortage of food, no stressing over wasps, all pillars happy and doing their thing, but it’s chaos and it’s totally my own stupid fault. I was lulled into a false sense of security by all my “back-up” plants in pots (some 6 feet tall) and didn’t squish nearly as many eggs as I should have so I have too many pillars once again.

    Honestly, pigeons learn faster than me.

    #18856

    Swansong
    Participant

    Hi zoe, great to see you!

    Did you say anything to the folks at mitre10 about maybe keeping their swanplants away from the open areas? This is what Im going to do if and when I come across it.

    Looks like your season is well under way. Apart from a “slipup” a coupla months back (which resulted in 16 chrysalii) mine is about to begin. Tomorrow! I’ll open the net for 1 day and see how we go : ).

    Swansong

Viewing 15 replies - 1 through 15 (of 15 total)

You must be logged in to reply to this topic.