Beautyberry is a great little native shrub. The berries are the outstanding feature of this shrub, but that is about it. The berries are attractive to wildlife and are really all this great shrub needs to be welcomed in my garden. Birds, butterflies and moths all like beautyberry as well.
On a recent walk around the garden my friend Judie spotted three yellow woolly bear caterpillars all lined up on the beautyberry. Good catch Judie! I went back later with my camera and there were only two still lined up. The third was not far away but not in this picture.
I have never seen these caterpillars before and spent some time researching them. I believe they are the larvae of the Virginian Tiger Moth, Spilosoma virginica. The moth is actually quite pretty, though I haven't seen it. These larvae feed on a wide variety of low growing shrubby plants and they are welcomed to the beautyberry in my garden. I am looking forward to seeing the white moths with an interesting abdominal pattern in the future.
Has anyone ever seen these before?
in the garden....
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