Brassicas being eaten

Roberta Reeners asked 14 years ago

It is obviously too late now to save my Brussels sprouts and broccoli from the ravages of caterpillars. We used netting, but it was apparently not a fine enough mesh. But what about next year? I do NOT want to use the insecticides you suggest… a bit surprised that you did! Am always concerned about any poisons with food – but also fear their effects on non-target species… and the birds etc. which eat the larvae.

1 Answers

Gerry Daly Staff answered 5 years ago
Caterpillars can be prevented by scouring the plants for the egg clusters and destroying them or groups of young caterpillars, but it needs constant vigilance.

Close-woven mesh or fleece can be used as a barrier.

There is a biological control which contains bacteria that kill caterpillars.

Insecticides can be used in the period before the crop is ready for use. These have a very short withdrawal period of as little as one day. These are approved for use by the state authorities but everybody has a choice of using them or not. They are convenient for use with large numbers of plants where other methods are not practical.