At least for my six-year old son.
When he first spied one of the chubby 3-inch long hornworms among the tomato foliage, he recoiled in horror.
Horror gradually turned to cautious fascination as he helped me find several other hornworms that were feasting on my plant.
Charlie provides Last Rites to a Tomato Hornworm
Five minutes later he was plucking them off by hand, studying them, getting to know them as individuals, naming them things like “Mr. Chewie” and “Spike”.
Then he happily ushered them into the Lepidoptera Afterlife by submerging them in tub of soapy water.
Ahhhhh, the joys of gardening with children! How lovely to watch their sense of wonderment! To see them skipping and frolicking in the flowers! To observe with pleasure as they learn to nurture and respect the earth!
Here is a photo of my dear son, at age two, helping me plant a pot of herbs. Isn’t he just adorable with his pudgy little hands and his tiny plastic watering can? What a tender scene…helping Mommy water the plants! Isn’t it all just so sweet?
Okay, maybe not all.