Rolled up in Canna leaf

jeannies_garden(Texas 9)October 8, 2012

Is this a good larva? Can anyone ID it? I usually find the white worms rolled in my Cannas, but this was found this morning. Thanks, Jeannie:)

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jean001a(Portland OR 7b)

Perhaps the pupal case of the "white worms."

    Bookmark   October 8, 2012 at 2:41PM
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jeannies_garden(Texas 9)

The worms don't get as large as this. Thanks, Jeannie :)

    Bookmark   October 8, 2012 at 3:36PM
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jean001a(Portland OR 7b)

To determine who it is:
1. Put the pupa in a clear container.
2. Add lid that's porous -- eg. paper towel -- held in place with a rubberband.
3. Set on the counter/ your desk -- a place where you'll see it every day.

When the moth emerges, post its picture for us to see.

    Bookmark   October 8, 2012 at 6:00PM
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rhizo_1 (North AL) zone 7

I believe it's the chrysalis of a Greater Canna Leafroller; the adult is a type of butterfly called a skipper. I am totally in the dark about what you mean by "good larvae ".

    Bookmark   October 9, 2012 at 11:27AM
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jeannies_garden(Texas 9)

Rhizo....please get out of the dark! I mean as "good larva" when it becomes an adult will it be beneficial to my garden or will it eat up my canna leaves again.If it will be a moth or butterfly, they are welcomed in my yard. Just trying to find out. Isn't that what this forum is about.
Jean001a....I did as you posted and hopefully we will see what it becomes.
Thanks, Jeannie :)

    Bookmark   October 10, 2012 at 3:57PM
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rhizo_1 (North AL) zone 7

Jeannie.....let me turn the light on for YOU, lol. You are clearly confused.

ALL moth and butterfly larvae feed on plants. They might be foliage, bud, steaaym, seed, or flower eaters. That is what they do. It is up to you to decide whether or not you are willing to sacrifice a few plants (or a LOT of plants) in order allow those caterpillars to develop into the adult butterflies or moths.

Most adults feed on plant juices for their short existance as moths or butterflies. During that time, they perform as a minor pollinator (beneficial) and major 'beautifier ', depending upon the species. Some don't feed at all as adults. Many people judge the benefit of the adults by how beautiful they may or may not be.

The adults live solely to mate; the female will then lay eggs on a preferred host plant and usually die shortly thereafter. The eggs hatch......well, you know what happens after that. The adult will turn around to lay another generation of eggs on the canna.

I grow citrus in containers for one reason. I love to observe the entire Giant Swallowtail butterfly life cycle. The fascinating caterpillars strip the leaves in a matter of weeks. Are they "good larvae "? The spectacular butterflies are of more benefit to my soul than they are to the ecology of my gardens as a whole.

Your canna leaf roller caterpillar will turn into a short lived adult. It's up to you to decide whether it is of enough benefit to counter balance the damage to your canna. I expect that there is quite a bit of good information on the internet to help you make your decision.

My question to you was an honest one. I don't really care (anymore) if you understand the roles of the adult or larvae pestering your canna, but the general topic does come up quite often in several of the forums. It CAN be an interesting topic.....

    Bookmark   October 11, 2012 at 8:00AM
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jeannies_garden(Texas 9)

Not confused.....I've been gardening for over 30yrs.....I have just never seen that large of a what-ever-it is on my canna leaves. I've had the small white (almost see through ones) off and on for over 30 yrs. I love watching nature also.....I have so much butterfly weed in my garden already and I still buy more every spring for the butterflies. Just wanted to see what this would turn into. Thanks, Jeannie :)

    Bookmark   October 11, 2012 at 4:05PM
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Tiffany, purpleinopp GardenWeb, Z8b Opp, AL

Did this guy make threads around the leaf to hold it closed? Found some Canna leaves like that yesterday. Inside each was a little greenish caterpillar, lots of poo, smelly. Lesser canna leafrollers I think since sources I found said greater canna leafrollers cut the leaves before rolling them. I don't usually interfere but I got involved in this one for sure.

From what I can discern with the help of the handy-dandy WWW, yellow sulphur larvae will munch a bit on leaves but they don't roll them up. Lesser leafrollers are not attractive, IMO, and not why I have the Cannas. The leafrollers have no purpose except to eat Cannas, as far as I can tell.

The link below is informative but I'm very disappointed in the control info. It took 5 minutes to remove the affected leaves and eradicate the munchers. Can't imagine poisoning the yard over something so trivial, easy to find, and eradicate.

Here is a link that might be useful: NC State info sheet

    Bookmark   October 12, 2012 at 10:15AM
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Tiffany, purpleinopp GardenWeb, Z8b Opp, AL

Got out there to take a pic. This leaf looked worth saving after removing the critter.

    Bookmark   October 14, 2012 at 1:22PM
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jeannies_garden(Texas 9)

Will soon see the real identity.....Thanks, Jeannie :)

    Bookmark   October 15, 2012 at 5:11PM
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Tiffany, purpleinopp GardenWeb, Z8b Opp, AL

No doubt. Excellent pic. You can see it's changing to a winged thing. Keep us posted!

    Bookmark   October 15, 2012 at 5:24PM
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jeannies_garden(Texas 9)

Almost! Thanks, Jeannie :)

    Bookmark   October 16, 2012 at 12:14PM
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jeannies_garden(Texas 9)

Thanks Rhizo. Looks like it is the larger canna leafroller, Calpodes ethlius (Stoll), whose adult form is variously called the Brazilian skipper, the canna butterfly, or the arrowroot butterfly. I found this website for more info. Thanks, Jeannie :)

Here is a link that might be useful: Featured Creatures

    Bookmark   October 16, 2012 at 5:34PM
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jeannies_garden(Texas 9)

It started to rain, so I checked on him and now setting him free. I've always seen the smaller white worms (almost see-thru) and never saw one when it was this large. It was a neat experience to watch. Thanks purpleinopp for the advice. I raise butterflies (mostly Monarch and a few Gulf Fritillary ). Thanks, Jeannie :)

    Bookmark   October 16, 2012 at 5:42PM
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tsugajunkie z5 SE WI

Thanks for taking the time to keep us updated.

tj

    Bookmark   October 16, 2012 at 5:54PM
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jeannies_garden(Texas 9)

I wanted to also thank Jean001a for the idea about watching it in the jar with papertowel and rubberband. I had it on a tall shelf in my covered breezeway and it just started raining earlier, and I went to check on it and noticed it had emerged. I'm sure I'll use the jar idea again. I've been seeing a black butterfly fluttering by in the summer, but he always leaves my yard....I guess he/she's being selective on what he/she's looking for. I have all kinds of tropical plants and lots of native ones. Who knows! Thanks, Jeannie :)

    Bookmark   October 16, 2012 at 6:41PM
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rhizo_1 (North AL) zone 7

We love people who are observant and interested in what's going on in their garden. We ALL learn together.

    Bookmark   October 16, 2012 at 9:44PM
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