Cabbage loopers (Trichoplusia ni) is a type of cabbage worm that attack cruciferous vegetables, including cabbage, bok choy, broccoli, beans, lettuce, cotton as well as ornamental plants such as chrysanthemum. The eggs are generally yellow-white in color, dome-shaped and patterned with ridges. The larvae are pale green, often with a white stripe along the side and have a distinctive looping walk, from which they get their common name. Pupation occurs in the undersides of leaves, where they form a silky cocoon. Adults are medium sized brown moths and can undergo several generations in a crop cycle.
Cabbage loopers can inflict various kinds of damage on a crop.
Cabbage looper larvae feed on leaves. The first three instars feed on the lower leaf surface, while fourth and fifth instars chew large irregular holes in the center of leaves. In cabbage, however, cabbage loopers may also may bore into the developing head causing marketable loss.
The cabbage looper will leave behind sticky frass, contaminating the plants and causing marketable loss.
There are natural enemies of the cabbage looper.
For more information contact your local BioBee field agent.