It's not about vegetables and what I harvested today and how many bags of zucchini I'll be hauling in to work tomorrow. (You have to be sick of that topic by now!)
It's also not about the weather even though it would be tempting to complain about how hot it is, but it's hot everywhere right now.
It's about tent caterpillars. (Please stay! I took pictures!)
Please be warned at this point that I have indeed taken pictures of some tent caterpillars that I found in my Sweet Gum tree this evening. If you are squeamish about little tiny caterpillars that look like little tiny worms, you might want to turn away as you cursor down to leave a comment (if you are so inclined to comment). There are just two pictures so if you scroll down really fast, you can avoid them.
So, duly warned... let's continue.
I'm was working a bit in the vegetable garden this evening, because even in this heat those vegetables just won't wait to be harvested, when I turned around and saw that some tent caterpillars had set up camp in my Sweet Gum tree (Liquidambar styraciflua). Sigh. I hate when they do that. They tried it a few years ago in another tree in my backyard.
Caution... close up coming. This is the part where you see the thousands of caterpillars in the "camp".
I don't know if these are Eastern tent caterpillars or forest tent caterpillars or some other kind of tent caterpillar. It really doesn't matter as the method of dealing with them is the same.
It was kind of creepy when I got up close to these caterpillars to see them all start to wiggle like crazy. Did they see me? Or did they see those clippers in my hands and sense what was coming next?
Because what came next was me cutting these out of the tree. That's the only way I know how to deal with these tent caterpillars. It wasn't a big tent, so it didn't take long to cut it out, drop it in a trash bag and put it out in the trash. Fortunately, the weekly trash pick is tomorrow.
You can hardly tell what was here before.When you find tent caterpillars, you should remove them immediately as that tent will only get bigger each day. It doesn't matter how hot it is or how late in the day it is, you've just got to put on some gloves, get your clippers and cut them out of the tree.
After I destroyed this tent, I checked all my other trees to see if there were any others, and luckily, this was the only "camp".
If you have some trees in your yard, and surely you do, you might want to go out, maybe late in the day when it is "cooler", and make sure you don't have any tent caterpillars camping in one of your trees. If you don't see any that's great; if you do, cut 'em out.