An Obsession with All Things Handmade and Home-Cooked

Pesky Pests


Another year, another laughable harvest. Too much sun, too little rain, invasive weeds, you name it, we’re battling it. This time around, however, we got a whole new problem to deal with; Bugs. Big, squishy-looking, purple bugs that really creep me out. Nibbling away at the tender green leaves of the unripe eggplants, it seemed as if yet another summer’s planting would be doomed, eaten away before it had even finished growing. Thanks to the kind folk who heard my panicked cries on Flickr, however, help came just in the nick of time. Who knew that by simply planting a companion plant that those malicious pests would instantly give up the fight and relocate? It was magical, I tell you! One day they’re munching away without a care in the world, the next, not a single buggy body to be found.

Of course, things couldn’t just be that simple… Now, we have a whole new cast of characters to contend with…


The good news is that these guys are at least a bit less voracious, and the leaves seem to be slowly growing back, but there’s just no easy fix, huh?

I can only hope that they leave one or two eggplants for us!

Author: Hannah (BitterSweet)

Author of My Sweet Vegan, Vegan Desserts, Vegan a la Mode, and Easy as Vegan Pie.

26 thoughts on “Pesky Pests

  1. I think that’s is a pink colorado potato beetle. If you have any Diotomaceous Earth, try sprinkling it on the leaves. It works for flea beetles too.

  2. Cute! Too bad the real pests are not that adorable. I hear ya in the garden department. This year, I had quite the battle with spider mites, but have learned that spraying them with diluted dishsoap really works, thus I was able to save my cherished grapefruit tree!

  3. Ohmigosh, those are hilarious! I just came across your blog, so I don’t know where you hail from, but here in the Pacific NW the slugs are .. well, epic.

    I MUCH prefer yours!!

  4. As someone who has been to an event called Slugfest(there are lots of slugs in the PNW) I can tell you if you get a 2 liter bottle and empty it, then fill it with a little beer they will go in there and leave your plants alone. The slugs love the beer. Must be Canadian. :)

  5. These are too cute to be called pests.

  6. So cute! I love slugs in real life, but at least these are cuddly too!

  7. Okay. Can I say that this post reminds me of KitteeKake? Except I would not mind having your guys on my plants!

  8. I’ll take soft, fuzzy, Hannah-made slugs on my plants any day!

  9. These slugs are significantly cuter and cuddlier than their real life counterparts. And yet, I’m still as skeeved out (and, admittedly, afraid) of slugs as I was as a wee one.

  10. I love slugs! The are so fascinating. Once on a backpacking trip, I came across a slug on a leaf, eating the leaf, and I could hear the “chomp, chomp” sounds as he chewed.

  11. I normally thinks slugs are gross, but yours are so cute.

  12. I had a few chilli plants in my bedroom a few years ago, and all was going well until I added to my collection of hand-grown plants with one from a garden centre. All of a sudden, every plant was covered in tiny spider like creatures nibbling away at my leaves!!
    I tried a few things – drop of detergent in the water mist sprayer, leaving them outside for awhile, giving them a bath, but to no avail.
    In the end the chilli plants saviour was a single plump ladybird, who’s offspring devoured every single mite, before turning into the spotted red beetles we all know and love.
    Problem solved. Although encouraging all my new polkadot friends to find a new home took quite a bit of effort!

  13. You must have some seriously nimble fingers to make these adorable little critters! I’m glad to hear your eggplants have been saved!

  14. haha – you are too funny! If only real slugs were so cute. I have bright orange ones in my backyard – ick.

  15. I’m glad you were able to get rid of the purple bugs. The slugs are adorable!!! Too bad real slugs couldn’t be as cute :)

  16. I think you’re close in identifying them. They are probably colorado potato beetle larvae. Here’s a link that suggests ways to control them sustainably:

  17. we don’t have a garden this year, as our new apartment didn’t come with any outdoor space for us to use, but the other day as i was prepping broccoli for the steamer basket, i discovered numerous black wormies hiding amongst the florets. i *know* that all i gotta do with something like that is to soak ’em in salt water, but this time i just couldn’t handle it. it may have been my night to make dinner, but i resigned myself to priss status and passed the task off to my boyf. i wish organics helped the consumer to grow a thicker skin!

    ps. those knitted critters sure are cute!

  18. Awww, so cute! We were dared to kiss banana slugs back when I went to science camp, hehe.

  19. Glad to hear the companion plants worked well! :)

    You’ve got a wonderful character. I do enjoy all the ways you set up a scene for your crocheted buddies.

  20. Your slugs are much cuter and way less slimy than the ones I usually see in the garden. LOL.

  21. cute slugs! I love how you always ‘set the stage’ for your critters. I don’t have the gift. Mine read: Here is the _____ I made for ____. ta da, the end. not exactly reader inducing….is that grammatically correct?! reader inducing?

    For the real ones try these 2 ideas:
    beer in little lids or shallow dishes, they love it, crawl in and drown :-(

    or, put hair clippings around the plant, it cuts their little bodies and they die :-(

    either way works……..

  22. Those are the best kind of bugs to have :-)

  23. Soooo cute! Your slugs can come play in my plants anytime.

  24. Super cute slugs! They can visit my garden any time!

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