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Kōkua Learning Farm Update

September 02, 2020

Over the last month we have seen an exciting new influx of new visitors to our Kōkua Learning Farm māla!  These garden friends are a wide variety of invertebrates of many shapes, sizes, and colors. Their presence indicates that our farm is becoming part of the local ecology! Some of these visitors are pests, like the corn earworm caterpillar above. At this early stage in our farm development they are welcome to contribute to the cycling of nutrients through the soil. One benefit of allowing these pest species to remain in our fields despite the damages they may do to our harvest is the growth of healthy populations of beneficial invertebrates that will prey on them long into the future. Many wasps, including the one above, are voracious predators.  Diets of different wasps can be very broad, including some things as large as spiders and caterpillars!

Since these are new garden friends, can any of you help identify them? Do you think these are garden buddies or garden pests? We cannot wait to introduce you to all of these new inhabitants of our māla and share our harvests, once we are able to safely reconvene on the Kōkua Learning Farm again!