Hi despite covering my sprouts and cabbages with four layers of fine netting the cabbage whites managed to get underneath and lay their eggs. My best efforts to pinch out the eggs resulted in a considerable number of caterpillars developing. I managed to pick some out but the remainder caused damage. Anyone got any advice here. Farmers crops never seem to be affected??


  • fidgetbonesfidgetbones Posts: 11,099

    Farmers will spray regularly.

    Enviromesh is the best solution if you don't want to spray. Make sure all the corners and edges.are pegged down well.

    You can try planting nasturtiums nearby which the butterflies will use as a food crop instead. You sacrifice the nasturtiums but  protect the cabbages.

    It's not a mess, it's a nature reserve.
  • Dave MorganDave Morgan Posts: 3,122

    Do as fidget says, butterflies actually prefer nasturtiums to cabbages, so companion planting is the answer.

  • nutcutletnutcutlet Posts: 24,050

    and more time picking and squidging

  • BarneybBarneyb Posts: 24

    Brilliant everyone. I have seeded some nasturtiums so hopefully that will help.

    Is Enviromesh the same as/similar to garden fleece?

    I really don't like the idea of using sprays. I did rot down in water and drain off some rhubarb leaves. Disgusting smell and didn't do too much prevention work. Will try all suggested thanks

  • fidgetbonesfidgetbones Posts: 11,099

    Enviromesh has tiny holes in to let water and light in but not butterflies. You can get it online or from most garden centres.


    It's not a mess, it's a nature reserve.
  • BarneybBarneyb Posts: 24

    Thanks FB

  • Crazy CatCrazy Cat Posts: 41


    I can certainly sympathise with you Barney! I have horse grazing fields at the back which are just a bloody haven for moths and butterflyimage 

    I tried everything; nets, companion planting, sour milk on the eggs, organic insecticides such as Dipel based on bacteria (Bacillus thuringiensis). Even daily caterpillar squish patrols....None worked. I no longer attempt to grow brassicas!

    Still- it left me with more space for others such as toms, courgette, beans etc so I cant moan. And the fields also provide lots of bees so that's another positive.

    Best advice- look around your area and see what others are growing; if the only way to keep your cabbage alive is by using expensive chemical pesticides then is it worth it? Use the space to grow something else?

    Best of luck in the butterfly battle!



  • BarneybBarneyb Posts: 24

    Thanx CC. Good advice. I will give it one more try this year.image

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