Last week I went out one morning and spotted a pot of Pentas being decimated right before my eyes. The culprits were a bunch of caterpillars that you can see here. My initial reaction was anger but that's where the pause came in. You see, I'm not using insecticides much at all so my curiosity was piqued as to whether or not this was a friend or foe.
There was a flurry of text messages to my butterfly group friends and research on the internet. My friend's landscape architect was at her house at the time and they came over to see. #wearenerds
We all agreed these are most likely Sphynx Moth Caterpillars which people often despise because they eat so much. But guess what they morph into?
Hummingird moths or Sphynx moths.
I had no idea they were the same or very closely related.
These moths are pollinators - we need them in our world!
I suppose if I were the type of gardener growing plants for my own sustenance, I might not appreciate this caterpillar at all. But knowing that some little boys and girls might later have the chance to watch or chase a hummingbird moth is pretty neat to me. I'll sacrifice this plant for that possibility.