How to Get Rid Of Caterpillars on Kale

How to Get Rid Of Caterpillars on Kale

If you love gardening, then you probably have loath the sight of pests and insects common in your garden. While the backyard garden attracts insects that are beneficial to your garden, they come with those that damage your plants. Well, luckily, today, we are looking at the best ways to get rid of caterpillars on your kale.

1.     Get Your Hands Dirty

This method is not for the soft-hearted among you. Find the caterpillars and remove them by hand. This is a time-consuming method but a very effective one. Once you are through removing them, you can crush them to ensure they are dead.

 If this is too much for your stomach to take, get a bucket halfway full of hot water soapy water. Then drop all the caterpillars in, ensuring your drown them. Remember to remove all the webbed or rolled leaves as they hide caterpillars.

2.     Naturally Occurring Soil Bacteria

Using the bacteria Bacillus thuringiensis (Bt), ‘naturally occurring in soil,’ is another way to get rid of caterpillars on kale. The bacteria kill caterpillars in a few days by destroying the stomach lining.

You don’t have to worry about side effects as it’s a natural bacterium. Simply spray the kale with its liquid and wait for the insects to ingest. Moreover, it’s advisable to spray during the evening when the caterpillars are not active.

Ensure you repeat this process after a few weeks if the insects are persistent. The bacteria are only toxic to the caterpillars hence not a threat birds, people, or bees. It is also broken down in sunlight and rain, and as such, it will not last long on the plants.

3.     Attracting Birds and Beneficial Insects

 Some insects feed on caterpillars; this, along with birds, will help protect your kale. It would be best if you opted for this method rather than pesticides. Plant more flowers in your garden since most of the insects that eat caterpillars are pollinators.

Planting a bunch of flowering plants together will make them easily identified by the insects. This is an effective way to keep the predators of the caterpillar coming back. Also, build a fountain or a small watering hole to make water available to attract insects and birds. Trees and a portion of unplanted land will attract insects and birds as they provide nesting grounds.

4.     Companion Planting

Some plants have natural substances that repel insects. Using this companion planting is one of the best ways to control pests in our gardens. By using this method, you can easily keep harmful insects out of your garden. Growing crops like oregano, thyme, or hyssop is a great way to get rid of caterpillars. You should try and find plants that are repellant to the type of caterpillar you are trying to get rid of.

Using any of these methods will help you get rid of caterpillars on your kale. Selecting one or more of these methods will be dependent on which you will be most comfortable using. Give a few of them a try and see which is best for your garden.