Hornworms – Garden tomatoes

Q: Last year I had a problem with hornworms on my garden tomatoes. This year I planted tomatoes in containers on my very high deck, using store-bought potting soil. The hornworms are terrible still! Where did they come from?

A: Hornworm caterpillars originate from eggs laid by a moth. There are actually two kinds of hornworm: the tomato hornworm has a black “horn” at the end of its body while a tobacco hornworm horn is red. The mother of either one is a large sphinx moth, often mistaken for a hummingbird as she seeks nectar from garden flowers. The moth Mama was perfectly able to fly up to your deck and find your tomatoes.

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