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Extra large green caterpillars with a small red horn

I went on a 2 week vacation in early July. A friend took care of watering my gardens during that time. When I returned, I found approx. 20 of these huge green caterpillars with red horns and yellow eyes (the size of my index finger) devouring my tomato plants. They were even able to destroy the fruit by biting into it. What could I have done proactively, to have avoided this situation please?
Thank you!

Nicksch :(

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Posts: 30483
Joined: Thu May 01, 2008 7:21 pm
Location: Zone 6, NJ (3/M)4/E ~ 10/M(11/B)

Caterpillars like this one? ... hp?t=18204

Did you find any with braconid wasp pupae on its back like the one photographed in the link?

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