No Buckeye joy with snapdragons

jrcagle(z7 MD)October 4, 2010

So this year was an outstanding year for Buckeyes (and other Nymphalids!). But my snapdragons got no hits -- neither eggs nor cats, AFAICT.


Is there anything I should know about varieties or species?



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bandjzmom(7 NWGeorgia)

I've had loads of them here nectaring this season Jeff, but I don't have any Snaps or any idea of what they were laying on. Sorry I can't help. I can sympathize though! :o)

    Bookmark   October 5, 2010 at 6:43AM
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bob_71(z7 MD)

Jeff, I am in Severna Park which is reasonably close to you and I had great luck this year with snapdragons from Lowe's. I can identify them by the Lowe's tag as being Antirrhinum majus. Being one of the most cold tolerant of the annuals, they were available on the first of April which allowed lots of time for them to develop before the Buckeyes showed up. I had two and yellow, and the pinks were better than the yellows...perhaps just a coincidence.


    Bookmark   October 5, 2010 at 10:30AM
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Call it beginner's luck, but I am overrun with Buckeye cats. How, you ask, do I know this? Because last year I attempted to grow Toadflax, Linaria purpurea and L. purpurea 'Alba' as a cut flower crop. My original strategy was to raise the seedlings in my greenhouse, then field grow and harvest the cut flowers to sell to local florists. Well the buckeyes had other plans! They gobbled several hundred robust plants to the ground. At that time I didn't know what I was dealing with...all I knew was that some pest devoured my dream. I would rid myself of this scourge, even if it meant handpicking the buggers off one by one. Off I went with a sample of the culprits to my Ag agent, who identified them as Buckeye cats. Well that was somewhat of a relief....but I was without a crop. Time for plan 'B'. I ditched the Linaria and opted to grow Cockscomb, which proved a wise choice. Then I started thinking, "How can I make this work for me?" I did my homework and discovered that Bucs in the wild eat Plantain species, a common WEED of lawns and roadsides. So I now line the walkway to my house in Narrow-leaved Plantain, Plantago lanceolata... my hubby has grown accustomed to my quirks and is now won over. Best of all, we have a constant supply of Buckeyes in all stages of life. This year, I have taken it a step further--I now offer a six-pack of plantains loaded with eggs for sale at my local farmers market. I can't keep up with the demand. So-- my advice to all who wish to raise buckeyes is easy--simply plant some weeds in your garden!

Here is a link that might be useful: Buckeye cat dining on Plantain, Plantago lanceolata

    Bookmark   October 5, 2010 at 11:15AM
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butterflymomok(7a NE OK)


I always have some snapdragons around, and only one year did the Buckeyes lay eggs on them and eat them to the ground. Maybe there is something else they like better that grows in your neck of the woods. That's what I tell myself.

I also have the plantain they are supposed to like. Nada.

No Buckeye joy here, either.


    Bookmark   October 5, 2010 at 11:17AM
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misssherry(Z8/9SE MS)

I'll probably try snapdragons again, even though they didn't use the ones I planted before. Down here, they use Agalinis fasciculata almost exclusively, a roadside plant. Which reminds me, I need to check the roadsides!

    Bookmark   October 5, 2010 at 11:42AM
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runmede(7a Virginia)

I read some place on this forum about them using Veronica. I had just planted this plant last year. Lo and Behold one evening around 7 PM, I found the Veronica and the English Plantain that was growing beside it covered with caterpillars.

The Buckeyes will do a bit of hiding during the day. I guess the early bird gets the worm, so the Buckeyes duck for cover and eat mostly at night.

    Bookmark   October 5, 2010 at 1:53PM
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jrcagle(z7 MD)

So I now line the walkway to my house in Narrow-leaved Plantain

Hey, I tried that, too. Common Plantain, actually -- I sold it to my wife as "poor man's Hosta." But two years and, and we agreed that it just didn't work well, so I pulled it out.


    Bookmark   October 5, 2010 at 3:37PM
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bandjzmom(7 NWGeorgia)

Hey y'all,
Where does a person find some of that Narrow leaved Plantain? I want some of that if it'll grow here. Aren't we funny coveting weeds? LOLOL

    Bookmark   October 7, 2010 at 7:37AM
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