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Jun 8, 2009 05:09 PM

identify: cutworm damage?

came home from the weekend to a sad state of damage to the following seedlings:
cabage & cauliflower also damaged but not as bad (they are larger)

check out this pics and help me identify....

I am thinking cutworm, am going to dig a little and see if we can find them then fix. I read that leaf damage can be a warning sign to them cutting at the bottom and getting the whole plant.

it's either that or some caterpillar.

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  1. Cutworms usually cut through the main stem with almost surgical precision. The sort of leaf damage you show in the pictures can come from birds, especially sparrows, which will eat all of the plants listed. There are very few if any chewing insects that would go for all of the types of plants on this list. Caterpillars in particular usually eat only a limited number of plants.

    1 Reply
    1. re: Eldon Kreider

      interesting. well I do have a lot of sparrows here, they have definitely been around eating my strawberries. I was not sure because the cuts where so straight, I would have thought that birds would be in little bite shapes or something.

      I sprayed them tonight with garlic/onion/cayenne, I don't think they will like that. perhaps I should put some bird seed in the feeder, it has been a really late spring up here, maybe their usually food sources are not around.

      the birds did not do this kind of damage last year, same birds, same plants. also my neighbor with her garden just over the fence had no damage. wouldn't you think birds would have gotten hers too?

      come to think of it, on Friday b4 we left for the weekend I remember seeing a sparrow in my garden on the soil pecking at something, perhaps I was actually seeing them eating. I will keep my eyes open for them.

      also alot this damage is in different beds...(same garden plot, different beds tho)