Fall landed on our piece of Earth. And the rain came. Lots of it.
Then we blinked and the grass turned yellow?
But wait a sec… it rained. It should have gone Kaboom!!! green explosion? Nope. It’s yellow and we can even see the soil underneath.
Now I’m on all four on the lawn. I inspect, Inspecteur Clusot style. Darn! Armyworms in military formations (well, not quite), munching away the grass, marching to new land (yeeek, my gardeeeeeeen!!!!!!!), their mandibles forward, their appetite growling and insatiable.
Then came Bacillus thuringiensis (BT), a bacteria present in the gut of caterpillar that I (conveniently) bought in the form of a powder (Dipel) ready to mix in a spray bottle.
Yes, I could have made my own Dipel… It’s dead easy in fact. See recipe below.
And yes, I could have let my chickens hunt them… or wild birds in fact.
Don’t judge me! There are many reasons why I didn’t do any of the above…
DIY Dipel recipe:
- Pick as many caterpillars as you can.
- Drown them in a bucket of water.
- Blitz them with a barmix or similar.
- Strain and dilute in a spray bottle.
- Spray over your crops/ornamentals affected by caterpillars.
I sprayed Dipel on the visible periphery of that infestation, up to 5m outward, and all inside the infested area. Now we wait. The bacteria should curb the appetite of these voracious caterpillars and then they go for a long sleep. Only to feed the soil with their decaying bodies.