Stress Encourages Pest Problems
As we note in most of our pest insect files, most insect problems, including caterpillar problems occur after a plant has become stressed for some reason. Healthy plants can usually handle a few caterpillars wandering around chomping here and there. A plant that is in stress however, seems to have an alarm system sounding that attracts lots of caterpillars at one time. So if one of your plants is attacked by a bunch of caterpillars, deal with the insect problems, and then spend a few moments trying to figure out if maybe there is something you can do to relieve the stress problem.
Preventing Caterpillars Next Year.
Caterpillars of all kinds are particular targets of many minute parasitic wasps. So if your yard is attractive to lots of beneficial insects, then the chances are good that most of the pest caterpillars are going to be controlled by these little helpers.
Caterpillars are favorite food for almost all birds. So the more birds you have attracted to your yard on a permanent basis, the fewer pest caterpillars you will have to worry about.