Monday, May 30, 2011

Garden Blogging:

The clavate tortoise beetle, (plagiometriona clavata) cleaves to the potato leaves like a round limpet.  On its back is the silhouette of a brown teddy bear, with tiny, tiny antennae.  It prefers to lays its eggs on the nightshades -- potato, tomato, eggplant.  Maybe they are in the yard thanks to the deadly nightshades that grow up the back of the hedge. I plucked 35 of them from the potato patch, and, since I'm not an angry gardener yet, I put them gently into the freezer to die.

In the natural course of things I will see the invading army of green spiny larvae - making a lace out of the crucial leaves, each tiny monster wielding a black rumpled shield that it builds of exoskeleton and feces.  Much less charming decoration than the teddy bear silhouette.