January 14, 2011 at 12:06 pm #487363
Wazza, you are so right about the near loss of so much empirical knowledge & wisdom that has accumulated over thousands of years. Luckily sensible people, including those on this site, recognise this and the pendulum is swinging back onto natures side.
All of the posts in this thread have been most helpful & encouraging. I have learnt an effective, safe, gentle, easy cure for another garden pest chewing my Cherries & Pears so I am off to bake some bread and throw some flour at the effected trees whilst on the look out for some ladybirds & bees.
Thanks for all your posts so far, they are a great help. All have a great day and keep dry, cheers porgeyJanuary 14, 2011 at 11:25 pm #487364
When I first veg gardened years ago I would draw butterfly shapes on marg/ice-cream containers and cut them out and string line them over the veg beds to deter the white moths,strings would tangle so I would just lay them on the soil etc.
I also throw old flour over the leaves of brassicas early in the morning while the dew is still on them to help it stick,grubs dont like it.
There are a lot of white moths everywhere down here.
I was talking to a neighbour who lives in town but has property near us he grows his crops at both locations and he was saying people in town were having trouble with fruit-fly I told him I didnt have any here and neither did he at either of his places and we both garden without pesticides.
I have noticed a lot more spiders everywhere this year even through the lemon tree,I’m quite arachnaphobic but if they’re keeping things healthy they can stay.
WE have a large spider near the front window called Charlotte who keeps the white moths under control.January 15, 2011 at 2:35 pm #487365
Its quite amazing how attitudes change to things and I am now reconsidering my whole attitude to Insect pests. Maybe they are not pests at all but we consider them so as we have not found a use for them. Sure the caterpillar of the White Cabbage Butterfly causes veggie damage but its easy to deter and limit that damage as well as being a great feed for ravenous chooks & other birds.
I too am (well was) arachnophobic and had horrible childhood nightmares of spiders. Yesterday I found another red back spider under a chunk of wood that was holding down a bit of weed solarising plastic. I was quite surprised that my reaction was not horror followed by a quick squish but rather removing the bit of moist timber (ideal habitat) and hoping to feed the spider to the local honeyeaters that are suffering due to lack of habitat. Fear is the greatest fear and with a bit of knowledge & understanding I have turned a feared pest into improving the local bird population, one arachnoid at a time.January 15, 2011 at 3:15 pm #487366
Porgey my greatest spider fear is of huntsmans they are everywhere down here and are HUGE I uncovered my ferrets the other day and there was one near where I needed to be and i gotta say I was nearly losing my lunch and I’d only had brekky.
For some reason these spiders really creep me out screaming doesnt deafen them so I just gasp now.
I cant kill them as I cant get that close,so they do what they do and so do I.
I have really surprised myself this year re the spiders in the lemon tree and everywhere else ATM that I am happy to let them be,they are doing a good job so they can stay.
As long as they stay outside.January 15, 2011 at 3:23 pm #487367
This spider and some if its bigger babies has made a home across the arch that our beans grow over. I don’t mind it being there catching the bugs, but I swear one day I’m going to be weeding underneath and forget that it’s there and when I stand up it’ll be on me!! I shudder at the thought, but it’s become sort of a pet.January 15, 2011 at 3:29 pm #487368
OOh that makes my tummy flip,but that is the kind of spiders that are in the lemon tree and anywhere else they can build.
Bel I wouldnt be able to even contemplate going anywhere near that thing buggar the weeds cause if it got on me I’d just die.Walking thru spider webb is distressing.
It’s amazing how the spiders know that there is going to be a prob;em with pests so they are about in greater numbers than normal.
Nature hey.January 15, 2011 at 3:56 pm #487369
I’m sitting here on the verandah that outlooks the paddocks, fruit trees and veg garden and I’m watching the cabbage white butterflies flutter around… There’s heaps of them!!
What I’m noticing is that they’re landing on is not only my vegies (better get some more egg shells out!) but on the paddock flat weeds too, dandelion, dock, capeweed etc. So it made me think, people try to eradicate these weeds on lawn… So then the butterflies can only lay their eggs on the vegies, rather than spreading their share of eggs over the weeds too!
The spiders under the broccoli should be proud of themselves… They’ve caught a little snail… Good spider!!January 15, 2011 at 3:57 pm #487370
It is a human instinct to fear spiders and arachnophobia is all part of that. However, I feel that the need to roll up a magazine and go the biff or ‘Break Out The Old Peabo’ is a bit misguided as there are better ways of living with and sharing our space with the little fury buggers. I am not advocating inviting them inside to take up residence and a feed of flies and other tasty morsels but managing them in the knowledge that they do far more good than harm.
I too hate Huntsmans but I am sure they would be a great little morsel for our depleting bird population. I remember a couple of decades ago I pulled the hub cap off an old trailer and out swarmed about 30 little rather pale huntsman spiders. I reacted with fear & loathing and a pinch of disgust as they creeped across the lawn in all directions. Of course my initial reaction was to break out the Bludestones and kill them but they are part of our habitat so I now leave them alone.February 13, 2011 at 11:56 pm #487371
I have read through this thread but cannot find the answer to getting rid of the white cabbage butterfly apart from covering it.
I do not get the caterpillars, just the butterflys coming in to gorge on my vege’s.
Is there a natural spray or do I have to resort to covering the garden?
ThanksFebruary 14, 2011 at 12:19 am #487372
With all the rain and now sunshine the White Cabbage butterflies have come out in force and are laying eggs all over the place. Having saved a lot of veg from the unseasonal rain I was not looking forward to the inevitable caterpillar onslaught munching on all things green & edible.
Well thanks to Warm Earths monthly Snips & Tips email I learnt that you can deter the territorial invaders by placing half eggshells around the garden. quote]
hope this helps , it was suggested half (white) eggshells help to deter the moth from laying eggs near where they (white eggshells ) are.February 14, 2011 at 12:37 am #487373
(Yeah, I know, that’s my answer for everything…)
NevFebruary 14, 2011 at 12:46 am #487374
I’m assuming the half egg shells are dome side up with the break on the soil?February 14, 2011 at 11:47 am #487375
Bluewren, as long as the eggshells are white, I don’t think it matters which way up they are. You can use brown eggshells too, just have the white inside bit facing up so that the butterflies see that patch of white and presume that territory is already spoken for. That’s why the white bread tags work, or white flowers. Obviously they are so busy flitting about looking for something to munch on that they don’t stop to realize that those white things are really not actual butterflies, just decoys. Nice to know that humans aren’t the only (occasionally!!) dumb things on the planet!February 14, 2011 at 11:58 am #487376
Thank you, that explains it better. I had understood the egg shells deter the caterpillars, but it deterring the butterflys as well, now that makes sense to me.
Off to eat some eggs……
Thank you:whistle:February 16, 2011 at 2:20 pm #487377
I’ve actually left the white cabbage moth etc alone this year – too busy and down to do anything in the garden. There are a lot about, but after the original munch, they’ve all died down. Why? Probably the wasps that are around the garden – there are plenty of paper wasps (at least I think that’s what they are) around the garden and I’ve noticed that they investigate my kale and other green plants really well. Apparently they feed cabbage moth caterpillars to their larvae (and feed off flowers, particularly brassica flowers in the adult stage). One more reason not to use broad spread insecticides.
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