Garden Discovery

We were on our way to go to the park for our tennis Sunday. I decided to check on my garden because it had rained very heavily the night before. As I looking at Thai Chilli plant and exclaiming over how so many leaves were literally gone, I realized something else. I had exclaimed,

“The winds must have blown all the leaves away!”

But as my vision zoomed in and out, I realized I was looking at something else and I screamed,

“Oh My GOD!”

We ended up being late for out tennis, because detaching those caterpillars from the leaves and stems wasn’t as easy as we theorized. They practically clung on for dear life, especially when we tried to nudge them off. Hubs put on his gloves and pried them off. N pried them off with sticks. But eventually they had all 4 caterpillars in glass jars; one for each child.

Today, we observed those caterpillars. N is the one who is the most smitten and obsessed with them caterpillars. In her Zoology Mammals class on Currclick, she has to make a project for a live presentation. While we were observing the caterpillar moving in the jar, I told her,

“Wow, if you’re taking a class on bugs, you could have captured this on video and use it for your presentation.”

She went out to check on them and found another tiny caterpillar crawling on our gravel front yard. Actually, yesterday, we tried to look for larvae on the plants but didn’t see any. We began to wonder if it’s the wind and rain that brought these bugs all of a sudden or what. Because the first one that they found had gone through its life cycle and suddenly we have these new generation of tomato hornworms again. So now we have 5 jars of caterpillars in a jar.

H is making a homemade terrarium for S’ tomato hornworm and it is becoming part of his Science project. S also started making her own terrarium and mashaAllah, they both came up with pretty neat cardboard caterpillar terrariums! They’re planning to transfer the hornworms to these larger shelters for when they’re ready to burrow and pupae.

H is still not done with his. He’s really taking his time in making this with precision.

how it looks from the other side

 

his blueprints

 

S’ version. She just wanted it done. I thought the elastic latch idea was neat! H claimed it was his idea when S showed me how this works. This is the top and the lid is kept closed by the rubber band.

 

When the rubber band is taken off, the lid can be opened.

 

How it looks like from the side. I love the base for some reason.

 

 

 

N was still exploring outside in the garden area and stumbled upon a white cockroach. I said,

“Baby.”

She said,

“No, it’s the same size as the brown big one.”

“Hmm, albino then maybe,” I replied.

She googled and found out that that is what a cockcroach looks like when it just molted.

Interesting!

The small green inchworm has apparently spun its cocoon, and so this morning we saw this:

No, the photo is not blurry. See the whitish oval around the inchworm? We figure that’s its cocoon.

 

I figured that the garden is probably teeming with these critters now. So we went to investigate and found these:

N’s guess is that this is the hornworm egg. We checked out some books on caterpillars, butterflies, moths and it seems like this might indeed be the tomato hornworm egg!

 

We also found this. Have no idea what this is!

 

The girls are obsessed with these caterpillars. N would check on them to such a point that her math, essays, work are not done on time. S would check on these too. Last night, these caterpillars pooped and their droppings look like tiny blackberries. It’s pretty gross actually. The girls scooped them out so the caterpillar won’t be wallowing in its own filth. They started feeding them our rotting tomatoes too.

See the ‘blackberry’ poop by the lower curve of the caterpillar’s body?

When N first got this tomato hornworm off my Thai Chilli plant. It was still clinging on to the stem!

I told N to make a chart and note down when she feeds them, when they poop, and basically keep a log of observation of these tomato hornworms and the inchworm. I doubt she would be diligent in keeping track of her chart though. Unfortunately, they’re not that big on data collecting. I suppose it becomes a chore when they do that. If I were to insist they do this, I’d have to keep a tab on them. Argh. One more thing for me to remind them about…again and again and again and again. Seriously, I am losing my voice today and today is the day when I had to repeat myself SO many times! I felt like screaming, which I can’t do anyway because my voice box won’t accommodate any high pitch sound production. I had to recite my surah in a manly tone.

 

 

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Categories: Animals, Gardening, Homeschooling, Outdoor, Project, Science | Tags: , , , , | 1 Comment

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One thought on “Garden Discovery

  1. charltonestatetrust

    Some really good ideas here!

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