pinwheel on deck

After too many years of fighting budworms that destroyed my terrace flowers every summer, I finally said: “No more! Enough.”  I was through with spending money to feed legions of voracious caterpillars whose only aim in life was to transform my beautiful flowers into skeletal sticks sticking out of my flower pots.

For the first summer ever I decided not to plant any flowers on my deck. When the budworms came – as I knew they would – they would have zilch to eat.

No longer would I have to go through the rigamarole of washing old flowers pots of last years soil, of buying fresh soil to pot new flowers, of constantly checking to see if any recent successful attacks on this national scourge had been waged and saddest of all, watching my plants whither and die.

I would be able to enjoy the whole long, peaceful summer without daily plant inspections searching for the little devils and picking the slimy things off my plants and dispatching them to  another world without mercy or regret.

But how bare my deck would look without flowers. How cheerless. Maybe I could do what a few of my neighbors in surrounding gardens and decks have done and exchange the real thing for artificial plants. A quick internet search dispelled that idea fast. The fake flowers looked as phony and cheesy as I remembered.

Another idea. How about an arrangement of colorful pinwheels? For years I have used pinwheels stuck in flower pots to scare off birds who treated my terrace like a 24 hour hangout leaving behind unwanted deposits of poop. The pin wheels didn’t scare them all off of course. These are after all tough feisty New York birds but it kept the bird situation under manageable control. I already had a colorful old pinwheel (above) I had bought a few years back  with this purpose in mind. Purchased in Chinatown, it was put together rather flimsily, designed to be more of a party favor than a hardy specimen capable of fighting heavy wind and storms. But I decided to give it a try. And it looked good outside, bright and colorful, twinkling in the sun as all its’ little pinwheels spun around in the breeze,

Probably it won’t last long. But that’s okay. The things are cheap and I’ll just buy another. And I won’t have to look at an ugly, greedy little budworm all summer. Unless of course plastic pinwheels are their idea of a yummy snack…


Past Budworm Battles: