Tomato hornworm comes from eggs that are laid by large mottled gray-brownish moths. These moths lay their eggs on their host plant (tomato) during summer. Tomato hornworm pupae thrive during winter and surface as brown moths during spring.
The first sign of hornworm infestation is when you notice the stems of your tomato plants are leafless. The awful part is that hornworms won’t just feed on patches of your tomato leaves. They have the ability to devour your whole leaves in just a night.
– Hand-picking and drowning: handpicking and drowning them in a bucket of water is the most effective and safe way of eliminating these worms.– Natural predators: some natural predators can be introduced in eliminating these tomato hornworms. Examples of these natural predators are green lacewings and ladybugs. These predatory insects will feed on the eggs and young caterpillars of the moths.
– Bacillus thuringiensis (Bt): introducing bacillus thuringiensis into your soil can also help eliminate tomato hornworm. Hornworm caterpillars will need to feed on this Bt to be effective.– Nonsystematic insecticides: nonsystematic insecticides are also effective in killing tomato hornworms. The plant will not absorb the insecticides, they will only stay on the surface where these worms will be killed when they come in contact with it.