Vegetables aren’t the only thing that can be found in large quantities in late-season gardens. Insect pests often cause the most damage immediately before harvest, when produce is at its most delicious.
As the summer progresses, several generations of pests emerge, putting an increased strain on gardens by autumn. You can prepare for the threat posed by these pests by knowing what to look for, and you can still reap your rewards on time if you start early enough.
These caterpillars love to munch on the leaves of cabbage, kale, and bok choy, but they aren’t picky eaters and will eat any plant in the cabbage family. They will destroy anything in their path, including tomatoes, cucumbers, and potatoes.
From white- to pale-green with whitish streaks, cabbage loopers arch like inchworms as they chew their way through your vegetables. Their damage to leaves and cabbage heads will prevent you from making your own sauerkraut.
Since looper populations cycle through multiple generations per season, they are at their highest in the fall. In places with moderate weather, reproduction happens all year long.