Last week I picked the last of my green beans, the last zucchini and all the ripe tomatoes. Now I will have to go to the market for my fresh produce. But what will the swallowtail caterpillars do when their food runs out.
This is my first year to grow bronze fennel. I saw this plant in a garden last year. Three feet high, with gorgeous bronze wispy foliage. A must for my herb garden. Growing it proved difficult in my dry soil. They struggled to stay alive and then were attacked by aphids. I gave them extra care and they began to grow again. Not as I hoped but at least they were still alive. A few weeks ago I noticed swallowtail caterpillars. 21 in all.
They chomped away at the foot high plant. No road runner came by to pick them off. All 21 appeared to survive. The next day I went out to find the whole plant eaten down to the stems. Maybe the thicker stems were enough for them to complete their cycle. I do hope so.
I'll be planting bronze fennel again next year if only for the butterfly show.
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