Caterpillars are one of the worst problems marijuana growers need to struggle with on a daily basis. These small yet destructive pests can devour a small area filled with marijuana plants in a matter of days. Because your weed harvest is at stake, it is important to learn how to get rid of caterpillars on cannabis the easiest way possible.
While experienced weed growers would argue that it is not a hard thing to eradicate caterpillars and other harmful insects from a weed yard, amateur marijuana growers are still in the search for amicable answers on how to keep caterpillars off weed plants effectively.
Nonetheless, I have done a lot of research on how to prevent caterpillars on weed plants and how to get rid of caterpillars on weed plants completely. For that reason, I urge you to keep reading to see for yourself the simple and effective ways on how to get rid of caterpillars on marijuana plants.
Before we learn how to get rid of caterpillars on cannabis, it is important to know what a caterpillar is. That way, it will be easy to learn how to handle the enemy that is likely to destroy your weed plantation.
What is A Caterpillar?
Caterpillars are insects in their larval stage. They are not yet mature. You can find caterpillars in butterfly and moth species and scientists believe you can get over 175,000 different species across the world.
At larva stage, a caterpillar is perhaps the most devastating creature in the butterfly and moth family. Although small and not yet mature, a caterpillar can measure anywhere between 1mm and 15 centimeters.
A majority of the caterpillars in the world today are herbivorous, meaning they purely feed on greens or herbs. However, you can find a minority is either carnivorous or cannibalistic.
Considering their specific anatomy, it is easy to tell the difference between caterpillars and their larval counterparts from other species. Some of the features that distinguish caterpillars are:
12 simple eyes (stemmata).
5 pair of legs at maximum.
They have V or Y-shaped lines on the front cleavage.
They have crochets/limbs that make it easy for caterpillars to climb on their prey without difficulty.
It is not easy to see a caterpillar on your weed plantation but you will definitely notice a big change the moment these insects invade your crops. They are known to cause massive destruction within a few days and unless you do something, soon they will clear the whole plantation.
Interestingly, you are not without help. Now than any other time in history, you can learn how to keep caterpillars off weed plants. However, even before you learn how to prevent caterpillars on weed plants, you must know if caterpillars have invaded your plants.
How To Tell Caterpillars Have Infested Your Cannabis
Caterpillar invasion can come in several ways, ranging from small subtle signs to big and noticeable features such as complete devastation of leaves, buds and branches. Whatever the way these creatures may show up, if let without any control measures, caterpillars will sweep away everything from your marijuana plantation.
Nonetheless, when they come, you will notice a few things quickly. Some of the noticeable features of caterpillar invasion include:
Chewed flowers – the first thing you are likely to see if there is a caterpillar invasion is holes on leaves. As mentioned, caterpillars are herbivorous thus they devour any green matter fast. Leaves are the first culprits. Apart from the leaves, caterpillars will burrow deep inside the marijuana buds. In fact, caterpillars target fresh buds and the result is a wilting bud and crop in general.
Leaf yellowing – after a few days of caterpillar invasion, your plants will start to yellow their leaves. In most cases, this happens after some damage has been done of the stem and or the roots.
Irregular holes – caterpillars have no manners at all. They chop your weed leaves with no regular pattern at all. The chomped holes may be tiny, even some measuring a few millimeter while others measure up to a few centimeters without following any specific pattern.
Stem damage – the worst havoc is when the caterpillars eat up the stem. These insects start by digging holes into the stem to usurp the ingredients in the marijuana stalk. If left without guard, the stalk will fall within no time and that would be the end to that marijuana stalk.
Ingenious Ways On How To Get Rid Of Caterpillars On Marijuana Plants
Once you’ve noticed the infestation of caterpillars in your marijuana, you need to act fast, lest, they will devastate the crop. What can you do to get rid of these insects from your cannabis? This part will explore on the four proven ways on how to get rid of caterpillars on weed plants.
1. Remove Them Physically
Are you wondering if it is possible to remove caterpillars from your farm physically? While it may not be possible to do so on large parcels of land, those growing marijuana on small parcels will not find it a problem to remove caterpillars physically.
You see, it is easy to spot a caterpillar using your naked eye. Remove it and kill it the moment you spot it.
2. Use Bacterial Sprays
Bacterial sprays that contain pesticides are the best in annihilating caterpillars. If you choose this as your preferred method, you need to find a spray pump and use it as directed on the pesticide label.
PS. You should not apply pesticides when you are nearing harvest time for this may pose irreversible danger on the people who will smoke the marijuana thereafter.
3. Depend on Praying Mantises
Praying mantises may appear to be other pests but they are good in eliminating caterpillars. These creatures wait patiently for anything that may invade your crops and the moment they spot caterpillars, praying mantises turn these devastating caterpillars into their delicacy.
4. Count on Parasitic Wasps
Another army that will work on the caterpillars on your behalf is a contingent parasitic wasps. This army of parasitic wasps knows what they want in caterpillars – they kill caterpillars and use the bodies of caterpillars to lay and hatch their eyes. Yes, you don’t need to worry or a lot when the ecosystem has its own ways of dealing with its problems such as the invasion of caterpillars on your cannabis.
You should not be overly anxious when caterpillars invade your cannabis. If you are able to pick them manually, do it. But if you have a huge parcel of land where you’ve put your cannabis, then apply other methods especially the use of bacterial sprays. Otherwise, for small portions, wasps and praying mantises can do the job for you and save you a lot of time and resources.