Garden Photo of the Day

A heavy rainfall transforms plants

Click to enlarge
Photo/Illustration: Michelle Gervais

A heavy rainfall in the northeast yesterday was a boon to our bedraggled and parched, late summer gardens, and while many of the plants in the area looked beaten down temporarily, it was interesting how the beating raindrops made these stands of tall coneflowers look almost like weeping shrubs. The insect didn’t seem to know the difference. Anyone know what he is?

Click to enlarge
Photo/Illustration: Michelle Gervais


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  1. oldsquaw 08/16/2011

    I think it's a monarch butterfly larva.
    The problem with the heavy rain, and we have more than 8", is that the phlox that had been bringing in all the swallowtail butterflies, and since last Thursday, the monarchs, are now depleted. They've been blooming and reblooming for weeks. Definitely a lure to encourage.

  2. Fredburg 08/16/2011

    Alianthus Webworm Moth

  3. tractor1 08/16/2011

    I found a nest of them here in the Catskills yesterday on my plum tree. It was pouring rain so I didn't have my camera. I nipped off the small twig with the nest and dispatched it with water softener salt brine I keep in a plastic jug just for that purpose. If not for the small gypsy moth-like webbing I never would have spotted it while out filling my hummer feeders... it's still teeming.

  4. PeonyFan 08/16/2011

    The fact that there was plenty of room for these flowers to sprawl made it beautiful.

  5. oldsquaw 08/16/2011

    I definitely stand corrected. Thank you Fredburg.

  6. ppinnc 08/16/2011

    Why can we not follow links posted by commentors. I'd love to be able to link w/o having to type it in myself. I want to read more about the Alianthus webworm or is it Ailanthus ? Come on Fine Gardening, make it easy for us !!

  7. Ruth 08/16/2011

    Sorry, ppinc, but we can't allow links in comments. If we did, we'd have spammers posting links to unrelated commercial sites and worse, and I'd spend big chunks of my day cleaning up the mess. Instead of retyping links you'd like to visit, just highlight them and copy them into your browser windo, then hit "enter." That's a lot faster than tedious typing.

  8. ppinnc 08/17/2011

    Thanks for the response, Ruth. I understand now and it's good to know someone is listening and reading comments. Sometimes I wonder if the problems I have are mine alone and the fault of my less than techno wizard status or if others are bothered by the same annoyances ! I am just mediocre w/IT , but I'd much rather be a great gardener !

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