Thursday, November 4, 2010

A-HA!

 
Thanks to some research on other gardening blogs, I discovered that this critter I was wondering about is called the polka-dot wasp moth. Seems to be an appropriate name for something so colorful. You can find it here: http://www.floridata.com/tracks/butterfly/waspmoth.cfm


I know this particular moth seems to be related to one called the Oleander moth, which is quite destructive. This one doesn't seem to be causing any damage to the plants it rests on. These polka-dots apparently hail from the Carribean and South Florida. I guess they are making their way north, because I have seen many in just the last week or so.
I don't think this bush is an oleander though, because the flowers are much different.
It definitely has the same shape.

Is there a secret to identification? I'm wondering how do I find out what things are
if I only have a picture? I am planning on taking a few pictures and cuttings with me
this weekend to the plant sale at the extension center to see if I can get some help
with a few of my mystery plants. Love learnin' about this stuff!