Black Swallowtail caterpillars will eat parsley, dill, fennel and rue, so if you have plenty of these in your garden your caterpillars won’t starve, unless you have too many caterpillars. Hopefully, it will be enough to feed them. The third time was a charm and it all stayed put. Hi, Kat! 100% Upvoted. Required fields are marked *. Nature is lovely though, what with fat contened bunnies and cute caterpillars with fresh breath! If you grow carrots, celery, dill, parsley or any related plants, you may be familiar with the parsley worm caterpillar. Or should I just plant more parsley?? I kept it in an aquarium from Nov 1-2015 to April 11-2016. The caterpillars that are eating your fennel, dill, and parsley are swallowtail caterpillars!!! They are quite stunning in appearance, I was in awe. A caterpillar has come to live on the parsley plant that sits near the kitchen sink. Mini Pavlovas with Yogurt Cream and Mixed Fruit, Cake Slice Bakers: Sweet Potato Cake with Chocolate Cream Cheese Frosting and Orange Filling, Gluten-Free Onion Rings with Pumpkin Sage Aioli. Parsley – Petroselinum crispum, a member of the carrot family, parsley comes in three varieties: flat leaf, curly leaf and root parsley. ;). This annual is a favorite host plant for black swallowtail caterpillars. This happens to us every year. Since my yard is mostly shade, I’ve planted my herbs in pots so I can put them in the most sunny spots. Today I found three of them: two are in the chrysalis phase and I did not disturb them, but one was a big fat caterpillar and it … took a trip off the balcony… Now I’m feeling terrible :( At least, if the two remaining become butterflies I’ll feel a little better. Monarchs will only feed on milkweeds while Black Swallowtail will … Oh my god!!! *I* wanted to eat my parsley!! Do woolly bear caterpillars eat parsley? I’m crossing my fingers that I don’t see caterpillars soon. Lo and behold…they’re gonna be some beautiful butterflies! Save my name, email, and website in this browser for the next time I comment. oh no!!!! And this is a very true statement, Black Swallowtail caterpillars do, indeed, use all of these as host plants. Parsley is a host plant for Black Swallowtail butterflies to lay their small yellow eggs. These caterpillars eat the actual leaves, not the stems or flowers, so they need grasses in their leafy green stage, not their fruit-bearing straw or hay stage. I have window boxes off a second level deck and have parsley in one of them. hmm,now I am thinking a herb-fed rabbit might be pretty tasty…, I just kIlled 4 of them. It had already gone to seed so I wasn’t concerned. I stumbled onto your blog via google search (green with black striped catepillar ha!) That reminds me of the year I planted a beautiful herb garden. Black swallowtail caterpillar in the parsley plant. Hi Barbara! I’m so excited to see what they them turn into beautiful butterflies! Not dead–completely missing. Generally, you want to use the same plant where you originally found the caterpillar's eggs. We have about 30 of the little guys all over our parsley plant. I don’t mind if my parsley gets eaten. I’ve heard dish soap and water work for other pests….sorry, I don’t know more. It drove me so crazy I honestly wanted to set up a hidden camera to see what was the culprit. Not dug up or anything, just completely gone. Apparently monarch eggs were laid on my parsley, dill, cilantro, and carrot plants because caterpillars are feeding on each of these plants (there are more caterpillars on the parsley than the other plants). Silly kids, parsley is for swallowtail butterfly caterpillars! You can grow them in window boxes. These two caterpillars look similar but have different diets. Before you comment check the other comments so you know what’s going on!!! Is there a humane way to make them stop? This site uses Akismet to reduce spam. The caterpillars eat almost anything and can be a serious pest of commercial and home agriculture. According to Texas A&M, it’s a bad-tasting caterpillar so birds and predators won’t eat it. Lindsey Johnson is a participant in the Amazon Services LLC Associates Program, an affiliate advertising program designed to provide a means for sites to earn advertising fees by advertising and linking to Amazon.com. Thanks so much for your posting and pictures. Black Swallowtails were in the past commonly referred to as the Parsnip Swallowtail as their caterpillar food plants belong to members of the Umbelliferae, or Carrot Family. I can’t wait for this all to unfold. It is a privilege to watch the process and happy that they chose my parsley. We live on the top floor of our building with a roof deck on the 17th floor. Now I know they are the black swallowtail… very beautiful caterpillars. There were more caterpillars than leaves on my small plant! Your email address will not be published. Log in or sign up to leave a comment Log In Sign Up. I can confirm that swallowtails do indeed love curly-leaf parsley. A quick online search for “white, black, green and yellow caterpillars” and “caterpillars eating parsley” led me to find out that we are the current caretakers of three Black Swallowtail caterpillars. Which caterpillars feed on parsley, dill, and fennel? Also monarch don’t eat tomato. I love to have fresh herbs to pick when cooking. We found our parsley was being eaten by these same caterpillars. They are enjoying my flat leaf parsley and my carrot greens too. They arrive in late summer every year and devour our parsley plants but oh well, it’s cool to see them grow from the size of a pencil eraser to the size of your pinky finger. I came across your post when I googled “green yellow black caterpillar”. Eastern Black Swallowtail on Parsley. Recently we got a question from a visitor about his black swallowtail butterfly caterpillars. soo cute. Check out these tips for searching your own yard for caterpillars. There was my caterpillar! Thanks for posting this information. Subsequently, question is, what kind of parsley do swallowtails eat? But they’re EATING MY PARSLEY!! I plan to do this next year because I’d like to know! And then how long until there’s a butterfly? Now that I know, I just hope to see them in their beautiful butterfly state as well. There are many reasons to let your parsley go to seed, but this may be my favorite: black swallowtail caterpillars. Parsley is a biennial in its native Mediterranean habitat. The black swallowtail caterpillar may not be poisonous but may taste base to its bird predators since they consume toxin from their host plants. Thank you for the post! Which means lots of Swallowtails (caterpillars). Sawfly "Caterpillars" Sawfly larvae look and act a lot like caterpillars—in fact, to many gardeners, the … No wonder there were SO many on my parsley. Great pictures! I’m going to go out and look for more b/c i’m a kindergarten teacher and the kids would love to watch it there also…. So I started to research this question. Not knowing at the time whether they were friend or foe to my cooking essentials, my husband picked them off and put them on another plant – I think a large shrub nearby. When the caterpillar is disturbed, it protrudes a pair of … We’ve had a lot of rain so we didn’t have to water them until today. You can also plant-specific host plants to attract caterpillars that turn into butterflies. On the upside, my daughter will love those butterflies too! BTW we have our parsley planted in a pot sitting on my potting bench and no issues with bunnies! :) I just planted more parsley in my garden a few weeks ago. If you guessed that one of those plants is parsley, you are right! What do caterpillars eat? They travel from the milkweed to another plant to pupate. Also, caterpillars eat not only the leaves of the plant from the host but also the flowers. Beautiful creatures, but I would like to enjoy my dwarf round carrots. Upon further research in the insects’ section of the Texas A&M AgriLife Extension Web site, I found it is indeed a swallowtail caterpillar, but it’s a black swallowtail caterpillar. An interesting experiment would be to put some in a pot, up high, where rabbits cannot get to it, and see if the swallowtails swallow it all up by themselves. Each day I’d plant it and go out the next morning and it would be gone. Yep. I am so relieved to know that there are other crazy people obsessed with nature in all it’s glory. I had no idea they would turn out to be so PRETTY!! We had a caterpillar munching on the parsley as well – sadly, something killed it before it transformed into a butterfly. I love to have fresh herbs to pick when cooking. Swallowtail caterpillars are caterpillars that can eat a variety of varied foods. HOpefully I dont kill him. They'll also eat fennel, dill, Queen Anne's lace and other members of the carrot family, but parsley … I noticed these caterpillars eating my parsley (down to the stalks) in hanging planters (out of reach from rabbits!). Indeed I, too, have a Black Swallowtail caterpillar on my parsley plant. Any suggestions? They are easily identifiable as green worms with a brilliant, yellow dotted black band across each body segment. No wonder there were SO many on my parsley. I do remember the caterpillars disappearing quite quickly after they ate all of the parsley. I searched the internet to find the identity of my caterpillar and lo-and-behold there was your article. But I didn’t expect to go out today and find that those tiny caterpillars were really very hungry caterpillars. ^ Same here! I was trying to figure out what was eating our parsley and took pics of the catepillars we have and viola!! I feel bad because we flicked them off onto the grass, but I didn’t want my parsley eaten up!! Fennel and carrots are other garden plants in the same family, as is dill. Thank you, so glad to read that they are going to be butterflies. Not to be confused with the Armyworm, the Army Cutworm is also another green/brown caterpillar that... Parsley Worm. Fortunately I did get to harvest some of my parsley and other herbs before he chowed down and froze them in ice cube trays with olive oil. Thanks! report. 0 comments. Trees and Tannins While woolly caterpillars usually stick close to the ground, they will sometimes take to the trees to feed, especially if they hatch near the margin of a woodland instead of in a pasture or prairie. Next year I will plant extra for when new friends come to dine. AW CUTE! Parsley is suitable for growing as a perennial in USDA plant hardiness zones 4 through 9. But I learned never to trust a bunny around fresh herbs. Thanks for the information on the caterpillar! Nothing better than their just-picked flavor and heady fragrance. This happened to me too, xo you mind if I quote your post in my blog, with a link and citation to you of ourse. I googled green and yellow caterpillars photos to see if we could find what kind of caterpillars were all over my parsley. My little girl was particularly excited when I showed her what the butterflies will look like in a few weeks after the caterpillars make their chrysalides. So I live in MI. Parsley worms are the caterpillars of black swallowtail butterflies. I found your blog today when I googled “monarch caterpillar is eating my parsley” (because, while I didn’t think they were monarchs, they look a bit like em). P.S. Adult black swallowtails are large black butterflies with brilliant patches of blue and yellow and red near the ends of their wings. This caterpillar is also called a parsley caterpillar or parsley worm because it eats toxins from host plants in the carrot family – carrots, parsnips, parsley, dill, and even Queene Anne’s lace. Lovely pictures…rabbits eat my parsley down to the ground every year, so don’t be too quick to blame the caterpillar! Not knowing what they were, I just cut the parsley with caterpillars on them and tossed them out about 30 minutes ago. i found this blog when i googled black and yellow caterpilliars. I'm Lindsey Johnson and here you will find recipes that I make for the people I love. The other day I saw some small (maybe 1 cm long) caterpillars basking in the sun on some of the parsley leaves. Here’s what they looked like: I thought for sure this was a yellow tiger swallowtail caterpillar because a few weeks later, we had quite a few flitting around our yard. Cabbage grubs, lily caterpillars, lawn armyworm, super-sized hawk moth caterpillars and codling moth caterpillars are chewers to look out for Yates Nature’s Way Caterpillar Killer, includes dipel a naturally-occurring soil bacteria which is harmless to humans, is a non-toxic control only for caterpillars of the moth and butterfly family. LOL! Some online sources say it's the Black Swallowtail but I was wondering if other Swallowtail caterpillars will also eat those plants? Obviously they don’t like the stems, which are quite unattractive sitting there naked in my garden. For your butterfly garden, it is best to grow the flat leaf. Your email address will not be published. These guys just destroyed my Italian leaf parsley, and I thought for sure they’d turn out to be something nefarious and poisonous. The diet of the Black Swallowtail caterpillar includes the foliage and flowers of carrot plants, fennel, dill, parsley, Queen Anne’s lace, and parsnips. We got a pot of herbs as a gift two weeks ago. WE have hungry rabbits here that have eaten all my snap dragons right down to the bare stems. i better go check on mine because now that i read this, i realized i haven’t watered them in 2 days!!! Sadly I killed a number of these before finding 17 on 4 parsley plants this summer. The female butterflies lay their eggs on your plant, but the caterpillars are quite small when they first hatch. for years always thought they were monarchs. planted parsley plant last week completely eaten to ground level stalks as well looked to see what it could be. Where do the butterflies go ? I have since collected all caterpillars from the trash and placed them back on the remaining two stalks of parsley that I did not cut. Normally... Army Cutworm. By planting parsley, you’re doing a huge favor for eastern black swallowtail butterflies, as this species feeds only on a few plants, including: Dill; Parsley; Fennel; Carrots; Queen Anne’s lace I found your blog confirming that they were indeed butterfly caterpillars! Nothing better than their just-picked flavor and heady fragrance. They can have the dang parsley. The name Polyxenes is derived from Polyxena, a Greek mythological figure who was the Trojan king Priam’s younger daughter. I suspect the timing is similar to other butterflies though. I barely managed to get enough for one bowl of potato salad. I just found one of these guys on my parsley this morning… we moved him inside so my 2 and 4 yo can watch him change. to ks and others…I can confirm that The Swallowtail Butterfly can indeed swallow up the parsley…even way up high. Learn how your comment data is processed. :o). Parsley isn't just to garnish your dinner plate! 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