Catapillars eating Dutchman's Pipe

Debbie Machmer
by Debbie Machmer
tonight I pulled no less than 50 catapillars off the Dutchman's Pipe. This vine has been here for nearly 40 years. I've never seen these catapillars before. they are black with tiny orange spots on the back and they are rather plump. the droppings were quite a mess as well. I am afraid they will destroy the vine. what should I treat with? I have house plants on the porch and they are not far.
  6 answers
  • Debbie Machmer Debbie Machmer on Aug 28, 2013
    seems I should have googled first, I've destroyed many beautiful butterflies! From what I've read, Dutchman's Pipe is typically a host plant for this species of butterflies. live and learn

  • Sia@South 47th Sia@South 47th on Aug 28, 2013
    @Debbie Machmer Do they look like this? If so they are a swallowtail butterfly. A picture of them would really help! xox

  • Debbie Machmer Debbie Machmer on Aug 28, 2013
    @Sia: yes, very much, spots are orange. I googled and found it. seems I did a bad thing :(

  • Douglas Hunt Douglas Hunt on Aug 29, 2013
    Ah, Debbie, you learned an important lesson about larval plants for butterflies. They get eaten! I am trying to find a spot for Dutchman's pipe because it is a host plant for the beautiful pipevine swallowtail. A fellow Florida gardener's Dutchman's pipe has been eaten to almost nothing three times this year, but it keeps coming back, and so do the butterflies.

    • Debbie Machmer Debbie Machmer on Aug 29, 2013
      @Douglas Hunt I feel sooo bad. I am always 'read the instructions after all else fails' kinda gal. the butterflies would be beautiful! Not picking another one. I've been here 4 yrs and this is the first time I've seen this. The vine has been providing beauty & privacy for nearly 40 yrs. I was afraid of losing it.

  • I have a Dutchman's Pipe but have not been able to get it to bloom? And the blooms are so cool! Does anyone have any tips on that?

  • Debbie Machmer Debbie Machmer on Aug 29, 2013
    Mine has bloomed 2 out of 4 years that I have been here. no answer for you, sorry