What are Caterpillars

There are many types of caterpillars which are usually the larval (caterpillar or grub) stage of moths and butterflies, such as cabbage moth, cabbage white butterfly, potato moth or tomato moth.

The moths lay their eggs on the underside of leaves. The larvae of caterpillars hatch from the eggs and then feed on the leaves or fruit.

Another kind of caterpillar is the armyworm or cutworm, which is brown or green (or sometimes striped) and mostly feeds at night. These caterpillars cut through the stems of seedlings or transplants, and can also attack lawns. The parent moth rarely does any damage and is not often seen as they mainly fly at night.



Holes are seen in the leaves or fruit. Holes are usually irregular in shape. Black or brown droppings can also be an indication of the presence of caterpillars.

How to get rid of caterpillars

Caterpillars can come in many colours and sizes and they often hide underneath foilage. If you've noticed holes in the leaves of your plants and tiny brown or black droppings - it's likely you have them!

Yates Nature's Way Caterpillar Killer (Dipel) controls a wide range of common caterpillars. It's based on a naturally occurring bacteria that only affects caterpillars and is certified for use in organic gardening.

Spray every 5-7 days, including the undersides of leaves where caterpillars often hide. Once sprayed, caterpillars can stay immobile on the leaves for a few days and then gradually drop off. And there is no withholding period.

Simply wash edible plants before eating.

Recommended products to control Caterpillars

Yates Success Ultra

Success ULTRA helps keep your garden plants from being attacked by common caterpillars plus other insect pests.

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