Science Find on the Homestead

The boys and I went out today to harvest some Jerusalem artichokes. Most growers will tell you to harvest them after the first frost as they will be sweeter, but we decided to experiment with the harvest time (aka we forgot until now).

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Luckily, it was pretty easy to dig in the dirt. There hasn’t really been a truly hard frost yet, which is crazy since it will be December in just a few days.

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We stopped digging after a bowlful and were headed back inside when Joe found it: a praying mantis egg sac.

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We have 8 on our rose bushes, but no one wants to try and get one to observe because of all the thorns. So finding one on the Jerusalem artichokes was a really big deal.

As we were gathering our tools up to put away, I found another, smaller egg sac and snapped that twig off too. We went inside and Joe got out his butterfly house to put them in while we researched how to care for them all winter…they don’t hatch until May-ish.

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Although there were multiple and varying opinions and methods on the best way to care for and hatch the eggs, we went with the easiest: in a jar, in the butterfly house, outside.

We have them on the back porch so we can peek at them whenever we think of it. They are no more at risk to the weather than they would be had we left them where they were and we wanted to keep to the most natural environment we could and still be able to observe them.

 

 

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