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How To Get Rid Of Caterpillars On Marijuana Plants

Marijuana Plant Pests

Written by Neal Brown . Updated: February 16, 2021

Protect Marijuana Plants from Bugs and Large Pests

Growing outdoors can lead to plants that are huge and healthy, but one of the biggest things growers need to worry about is pests damaging or eating the marijuana plants. A little bit of knowledge can help weed seed growers spot potential pests and ensure they are removed before harm is done. Where possible, it’s best to work to prevent the following pests and use organic control methods if they are found.


Ants won’t generally hurt a pot plant, but they are attracted to the plants if there are other pests in the area. If the ants do live too close to the plants, the tunnels they dig can damage the roots or make it difficult for the plants to get the right nutrients. Deal with ants by spreading cornmeal around the base of the marijuana plants, but make sure to get rid of their food source as well as it’s likely damaging the plants.


Aphids are tiny bugs that live on the underside of leaves. They can be found on plants indoors or outdoors, whether you live in Oregon or Pennsylvania. With the outdoor plants, there are natural predators that can help get rid of them, like ants. Indoors, they can quickly spread and will steal the nutrients from the plants, causing them to die. To get rid of them, use an organic spray that can be applied directly to the bottom of the leaves.


Caterpillars love to eat leaves, and they’ll continue munching on the cannabis plant leaves until the plant has few to no leaves left. Some will actually dig into the plant, eating the inside of the stalk and stems. Many caterpillars are attracted to cannabis plants, so prevention is key. Wasps, birds, and other pests that feed on caterpillars will help but use organic spray deterrents as well to keep them away.


Cutworms tend to go after plants when they’re still seedlings. They are active during the night, so it’s difficult to see them on the plants. The main sign they’re around is that the plants will have the top taken off of it. For seedlings, this likely means the plant won’t survive. Get rid of these by tilling soil or keep them away by planting sunflowers in the garden. They’ll stay away from the sunflowers, and the marijuana plants as a result.

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