Cross-Striped Cabbageworm Moth (Evergestis rimosalis)
Detailing the identifying qualities of the Cross-Striped Cabbageworm Moth, including physical features and territorial reach.
Updated: 7/31/2017; Authored By Staff Writer; Content ©www.InsectIdentification.org
A plain-looking adult Cross-Striped Cabbageworm Moth can beget an army of leaf-chewing caterpillars that quickly consume garden produce.
The larvae of the Cross-Striped Cabbageworm Moth is an enemy to anyone growing cabbage, Brussel sprouts, collards, and other leafy green vegetables. Tubular white eggs are attached with silk to the underside of a leaf. Once they hatch, the light green caterpillars immediately begin chewing their way through the leaf they are on, moving to neighboring leaves as they grow. They change color and begin showing a striping pattern that crosses the body left to right as they mature. Larger caterpillars have thicker stripes, giving it a darker appearance. The reproduction of the moth is ongoing throughout the summer, so a single leaf of collard greens could harbor caterpillars of varying ages. Because of their evolving colors as they age, it may lead an observer to think many different species are attacking the leaf.
Preventing the adult female moth from laying eggs on the plant is the easiest way to deal with this garden pest. Covering plants with row covers will keep the eggs off of the food source. If an infestation has already started, insecticidal sprays can help control a population. Removing individual caterpillars by hand as well as any unhatched eggs can alternatively curb their numbers and limit small crop damage.