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Q. Who is Mr. Smarty Plants?

A: There are those who suspect Wildflower Center volunteers are the culpable and capable culprits. Yet, others think staff members play some, albeit small, role. You can torture us with your plant questions, but we will never reveal the Green Guru's secret identity.

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Ask Mr. Smarty Plants

Ask Mr. Smarty Plants is a free service provided by the staff and volunteers at the Lady Bird Johnson Wildflower Center.

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Please forgive us, but Mr. Smarty Plants has been overwhelmed by a flood of mail and must take a break for awhile to catch up. We hope to be accepting new questions again soon. Thank you!

Need help with plant identification, visit the plant identification page.

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Friday - August 03, 2007

From: Charlestown, IN
Region: Midwest
Topic: Diseases and Disorders
Title: Identification of worm feeding on chockecheery
Answered by: Nan Hampton


I am looking to find out what sort of worm looking insect, is commonly found on chokecherry trees. It has a turquoise appearance with yellow fingerlike projections on the back. It suctions onto the limbs and is hard to get off. It seems to eat the leaves. It is as long as your pinkie and as thick as your thumb. Any help?


This sounds a lot like one of the Cecropia moth larvae, such as Hyalophora cecropia. You can see another picture of the larva and one that shows the adults as well.

Another possibility is Samia cecropia. You can see a picture of it feeding on rusty blackhaw (Viburnum rufidulum).

If neither of these is what you are seeing, you can submit photographs to us and we will try to find out what you have. You can read instructions for submitting photographs on the Ask Mr. Smarty Plants page under "Plant Identification".


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