Silkworm Season is beginning!

Every year it happens… the leaves pop out on the local mulberry trees, and then it’s time to start the silkworms.

10153303_10207606446412881_4991094600487356790_nThe Ancient Wisdom version says that you should start the silkworm eggs when the leaves are the size of a mouse’s ear. We don’t have the kind of long, slow spring where that lasts for long – so by the time I get a chance to snap a picture, they’re almost the size of a dime. This is a feral white mulberry tree in my yard in south Dallas.

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These are the eggs. You can tell from the size of the fibers in the torn paper towel edges, these are pretty tiny. They’re about the size of poppy seeds.

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When you get really, really close up, you can see the texture of the egg shell. The forming caterpillar embryos inside are in a state of rest called diapause; it allows them to survive through winter temperatures without dying, and they begin to metabolize and develop once they warm up in the spring.

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