Family Fun with Free Caterpillar DIY Garden Project

Are you looking for something fun to do? How about a free DIY garden project? The past couple months you may have noticed that your flowers are starting to have little holes everywhere or might look like they've been chewed on. That's because it's that time of year when caterpillars start thriving in the garden and we're not talking about Monarch butterflies unfortunately! Many varieties of moths (as well as the White Cabbage Butterfly) are now laying their eggs in ideal host plants. You might have noticed this most acutely if you grew Petunias in your garden or flower containers this year...Petunias are one of our favorite annuals and we have over 10 different varieties ourselves growing throughout our gardens so needless to say, it can be quite frustrating to see newly-forming buds just opening only to find out they've been half eaten by Tobacco Budworms. It's a burden and an annoyance for all gardeners everywhere...

However, this particular article is not about how to fight the battle against moth caterpillars invading your garden. Instead, we thought it would be fun to show everyone how you can turn that frown into a smile (at least slightly) by using those caterpillars to create a science project that's easy to do with children. It's a great way to demonstrate the beauty of nature and educate them on the various stages of caterpillar metamorphosis. And best of all, you can do it for free!

The moth caterpillar you're probably most familiar with if you're a gardener is the Cabbage Looper, otherwise known as the Cabbage Worm. It is smooth, green and is called a looper because of the way it arches its back when it moves. They are known to host on tomatoes, cabbages, cucumbers, etc. although we've seen them (along with Tobacco Budworms) feeding mostly on our Petunias and Geraniums in Connecticut. These caterpillars are members of the brown moth family.

But enough of the boring stuff, let's move on to the fun...(don't forget to pin the below picture project to your favorite Pinterest Boards and share our idea with others!) Family fun with free DIY caterpillar project

Expand the project by collecting a variety of caterpillars - some butterfly and some moths varieties. You'll notice butterflies and moths go through metamorphosis in very different ways. Have your children feed the caterpillars everyday and write down the changes they see as the caterpillars begin to pupate. Don't forget the fun of releasing them outside when they hatch and take lots of pictures and videos (like we did below) to lock up those memories! :)

[youtube video_id="mPFaErYCTA8" width="640" height="360" disablekb="1" rel="0" showsearch="0" showinfo="0"]

Are you following Earthwormtec on Facebook? Don’t forget to submit your email to our blog / newsletter to receive more news & tips like you found in this post and we'd love if you would drop us a comment and/or share your own gardening projects with us below - we always love a discussion and learning new things.

Learn more about Earthworm Technologies and support us by buying our organic BloomPucks and EarthPods! All our products are organic, eco-friendly, pet-friendly, child-friendly, fun, easy-to-use, and MADE in the USA directly by us!

Also in Organic Gardening Plant Care Blog

Top 7 Orchіd Pest & Disease Issues To Prevent:  Orchid Care (Part II)
Top 7 Orchіd Pest & Disease Issues To Prevent: Orchid Care (Part II)


Тhе рrеsеncе of pеsts оr dіsеase оn Orchids іs typically аn indіcаtiоn that something went seriously wrоng with the Orchіd’s еnvіrоnment.  Pеrhaps your Orchids are placed too сlоse tоgеther not allowing proper and аdequatе аir circulation, оr deаd lеavеs / plаnt debris are littering the аrea creating hiding spots for pest insects. Many people don’t realize 
Read More
Repotting Orchids: Orchid Care (Part I)
Repotting Orchids: Orchid Care (Part I)


Repotting Orchids is an important task you want to learn because sooner or later you will find that your Orchid isn't looking so well or worse, has stopped blooming. As we mentioned in our introduction to our Orchid Care 101 Guide, caring for Orchids over the years can be a tricky and sometimes intimidating task but once you get to know the nuances of your Orchid, you'l...

Read More
What Are The Benefits of Worm Castings in Your Home & Garden?


Enjoy a partial reprint of the article on the benefits of worm castings we wrote for the Connecticut Horticultural Society this summer! :)

Vermicompost (composted wood or food waste mixed with worm castings) & worm castings (defined as pure worm castings refined to 1/8" of an inch and much more concentrated & beneficial than vermicompost in the organic gard...

Read More

Subscribe to our newsletter

Subscribe today!