Prevention and control of the Cabbage White Butterfly is a concern of all vegetable gardeners. The first Cabbage White Butterfly of the year was spotted in the vegetable garden today.
There are two types of cabbage white:
* the Large White butterfly - Pieris brassicae * the Small White butterfly - Pieris rapae.
The cabbage white butterflies lay clusters of yellow eggs
on the leaves of brassicas (e.g. cabbage, sprouts, cauliflowers, turnips and swedes).
The eggs hatch out into green caterpillars, which eat the leaves so that large holes are seen. They also tunnel into the hearts of the vegetables, spoiling them and causing them to rot. The caterpillars excrete small brown or green granular deposits as they eat the leaves.
Prevention: * inspect daily & remove any eggs & caterpillars * cover brassicas with insect proof netting * avoid planting colourful plants near the brassicas which will attract butterflies * encourage birds which will eat the caterpillars by putting out bird feed * wash infected plants with soapy water
The Cabbage White Butterfly requires constant attention , with daily checks to make sure the vegetables are not being eaten by the cabbage white caterpillars.