Monday, June 29, 2009

Certain Disgusting Bugs

I've been away. Now I have a backlog of things to write about. Unfortunately I'm really beat right now so I'll just tell you about my most recent gardening.

When I got up to Vermont a couple of days ago I saw that I had lily leaf beetle larvae the size of winnebagos (the vehicles) chomping down my lily buds. Honestly if I hadn't seen them in the act I would have blamed deer. No exaggeration.

Lily leaf beetle larvae have to be the most disgusting insects on the planet. They are revolting and vile. I don't like 'em. I like most bugs but these are just nasty.
I swiped this photo from a UMass website. The page has everything you need to know about lily leaf beetles on it, including photos of the much less revolting (actually rather attractive looking) adult form.

As you can see the larva itself is bad enough (gross!) but while it's up to its evil business of killing the hell out of your beautiful lilies it is also crapping all over itself to ward off predators. That's fine and dandy in Asia where it actually has predators but totally unnecessary here.

So this weekend's gardening consisted almost solely of me going around with a container of soapy water and flicking the nasty grubs off of my lilies.

I also did some reconnaissance and I hope to have time to post some photos tomorrow.