A Newly Discovered Trap Crop

There they were.

Hiding in plain sight.

Munching on my beautiful amaranth.

The dreaded, destructive and disastrous…Japanese Beetles.


I’m a little surprised that with all of the borage in the garden, these little devils have decided to attack the amaranth.

Last year, they were all about the borage.

They couldn’t get enough of it.

We caught around a zillion of them a day, dropped them in soapy water and fed them to the grateful chickens.

It’s a big reason we planted so much borage this year.


So why are have they developed a taste for amaranth? Why did they bypass all of the borage that they so loved last year and instead begin to eat my amaranth?

Is it the sugar content?

Japanese beetles are attracted to plants high in sugar. The sugar content in amaranth is 3.3g per cup.

Maybe the height?

This year, due to the runaway squash and over zealous tomatoes, the amaranth has had to push its way through to get some sunlight. It’s taller than the borage and almost as tall as the dill. Maybe it’s an easy mark for the beetles.


Whatever it is, I’m just glad they’re staying away from my tomatoes.

The beetles are back
They’re on the attack
They surround my plants
Immune to my rants

But little they know
That much to their woe
There’s a new plant in town
To knock them all down

One response to “A Newly Discovered Trap Crop

  1. Pingback: Chores | a pinch of homestead

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