Wednesday, 5 October 2011

Vapourer Moth


This delightfully peculiar chap was discovered quite contentedly chomping its way through Rosa ‘Souvenir du Docteur Jamain’, a beautiful variety favoured by that heroic old soak Vita SVW (I have heard some truly heart-warming tales of her being pushed back to the castle in a wheelbarrow, three sheets to the wind). Recently some of the old varieties of Rosa we have on the Rose Walk have been propagated, so I re-homed ‘The Vapourer’ (fantastic name!) here amongst the quieter surroundings of the propagation areas. This moth caterpillar is listed as a pest of roses in some quarters, but it is not a fussy eater and will feed on many species of deciduous trees and shrubs. Personally I consider the possibility of attracting these caterpillars to the garden a reason to plant more roses!

Check out those horns!

This is the silken pupa case, somewhat different from the hanging structures of our butterfly friends


I apologise profusely for the absolute dearth of postings lately! I have been away at college since last week, somewhat swamped by assignments and the large volume of work that has been flung at us due to this being the beginning of our final year! In a moment of absolute genius, I packed my laptop but not the power cord so internet access has been sparse. Normal service will resume shortly.

8 comments:

Alice Joyce said...

The chap does have awfully good taste...
Rosa ‘Souvenir du Docteur Jamain’ is unfamiliar to me, but if Vita looked fondly upon it, I imagine it's a beauty.
Ta for the brilliant photos!

Janet said...

You're becoming a lepidopterist in your spare time, Bertie. I've never come across a vapourer moth before.
Glad to see you posting again. I presumed you had exams...

Prue said...

I've never heard of the little horned beauty so thanks for that. And I'd not heard the VSW wheelbarrow story :D
Good to see you back again - you weren't here and weren't in the garden anywhere I could see.
Good luck with your final year!

Diane said...

Fantastic moth. Never heard of them before, they look and sound a bit like they came from a Klingon Bird of Prey though.

But I think we need to hear more about Vita! She sounds pretty interesting...

DD said...

Funky little chap! Great photos.

Juniperhillfarm said...

Somewhat off the caterpillar topic but related to VSW being three sheets to the wind...my favorite story about her has to do with several of the gardeners at Sissinghurst who, during her early days there, would keep their own little flasks of hard cider stashed at strategic places throughout the garden that they could draw on quickly when they felt a thirst coming on. One day, George Taylor, one of the gardeners, came walking toward Vita when she said..."Drunk again, George?" George then replied... "Are you, madam? That's funny, so am I."

Cheers,
Joe

jayneonweedstreet said...

Marvelous! My friend at www.lettherebegarden.com keeps her eye on the caterpillars - I must tell her about this post!

Bertie Bainbridge said...

Joe a fantastic story, thanks for sharing it!

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