Wednesday, April 18, 2012

Toiling with the Land: Getting Rid of Tomato Worms

Then to Adam He said, “Because you have listened to the voice of your wife, and have eaten from the tree about which I commanded you, saying, ‘You shall not eat from it’;  Cursed is the ground because of you;  In toil you will eat of it all the days of your life. “Both thorns and thistles it shall grow for you, and you will eat the plants of the field.  Genesis 3:17-18


Part of the reason for my lack of blog posts the past few weeks is a serious case of Genesis 3:17-18.  We have been infested with worms at the community garden, and they just reared their ugly heads in the front yard too!!!   What's funny, is they are a type of worm we've never even seen in our garden before...EVER! 

"Project Rid the Garden of Worms" started during our Spring Break week.  The first day, I boiled me up a heapin' pot of garlic and hot pepper tea.  I just boiled up a pot of water, smashed about 7-8 heads of garlic with the back side of my knife, threw them in the pot (skins and all), dumped about a cup of dried, ground, hot peppers (we had some habaneros we had grown last year) and let it boil.  Once it boils, turn the water off and let it steep for up to 24 hours.  Strain it and spray it all over the leaves of the plants. 

Side Note:  WEAR GLOVES!!!!  If you a little on the slow side like me, :), you might be tempted to not heed that warning.  Believe me, it's a mistake you don't want to make.  I was holding the leaves of the plants in my hands while spraying them and not even thinking about the strength of the hot peppers in my concoction.   Lord have mercy, my hands burned so bad for an entire day straight, I was completely dysfunctional!!  It about drove me to the brink of insanity!!  The only thing that finally took the burn away (and believe me, I tried EVERYTHING)  was soaking my hands in rubbing alcohol until the burn got so intense that I thought I was going to pass out.  This is coming from a girl who actually gave birth with no drugs and still swears it didn't hurt that bad.  The moral of the story...wear gloves!!

Next step...hand pick, and pick, and pick and pick some more.   Most worms only come out in the cool weather (which means evenings and into the morning until the sun starts getting too hot for them).  So, if you're looking to get rid of the little boogers, the early bird gets the worm. 

Then, a dose of our now must-have microbial organisms gave the plants some extra fighting strength. 

With those methods, we were able to mostly rid the garden of the leave munching nuisances, but some were just as persistent as can be, so we had to hit it with a round of thuricide.  I really don't like using thuricide because of the controversial reports on it, so it is only an ABSOLUTELY, HAVE-TO thing for us. Thuricide is a liquid bacteria that messes with the worm's digestive system and makes them not want to eat.  They starve in a few days after eating a leaf sprayed with the bacteria.

After two straight weeks of work, the good news...the plants are thriving, producing and doing well...yey!!!

Through all the frustration and sweat, the whole process was an amazing reminder that we live in a fallen world, and there's nothing that we can do about it.  Believe me, those worms will be back.  The best news...Jesus has already taken care of it for us (worms and all)!!!   Even as we will toil with the soil here on earth, He is preparing a place for us where there is no worms eating your tomatoes, no diseases destroying your body, no sadness and no pain. 

“Do not let your hearts be troubled. You believe in God; believe also in me.  My Father’s house has many rooms; if that were not so, would I have told you that I am going there to prepare a place for you?  And if I go and prepare a place for you, I will come back and take you to be with me that you also may be where I am.  You know the way to the place where I am going.”

Thomas said to him, “Lord, we don’t know where you are going, so how can we know the way?”

Jesus answered, “I am the way and the truth and the life. No one comes to the Father except through me.

John 14:1-6

Easter may be over until next year, but Christ is still risen, He will always be the only way, and He is coming back one day to take us to the place He has prepared for us.   So, when the worms have got you down, praise God for Hope!!

Happy Wednesday!!

1 comment:

  1. Thank you for explaining how to rid tomato worms. I never liked planting tomato's because of them. I hope this year I can keep them away from my plants. God Bless