Garden problems

Asked May 21, 2017, 7:44 PM EDT

What is the caterpillar eating my lemon balm? How do I get rid of it? Image #1 - the caterpillar. Image #2 - damage to lemon balm. It has orangish "head", green body, less than 1/2 inch in length. Found in growing tips of leaves pulled together with webbing gossamer. Thank you.

Montgomery County Maryland

1 Response

We can't say exactly what type other than this is an immature stage of a leaf roller caterpillar, which will turn into a moth or a butterfly.
It is kind of ingenious that it is trying to roll in your lemon balm, because lemon balm if often not bothered by pests (and therefore he isn't either) as the lemon smell is repellent.

The best way to deal with pests like this is to monitor, and if they bother you, to pick them off and drop them into a bucket of soapy water to drown.
It's unlikely that lemon balm will be bothered.