How the Same Chemical Components in Catnip That Attract Kitties Create a Deadly Trap for Aphids

In a fascinating episode of the Reaction series “Speaking of Chemistry“, host Sarah Everts explains how the chemical components of catnip that are so attractive to felines – nepetalactone and nepetalactol – also act as a deadly trap for the aphids that feed on the plant.

The catnip plant produces aphid pheromones to attract aphid enemies. It’s an awesomely cruel application of the “enemy of my enemy is my friend” strategy. And you thought plants were pretty.