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Helpful Earthworms, UNhelpful cats

As I've mentioned in many threads before, I use mostly a mixture of compost, top soil, and sand straight out of the garden for my container plants. With the abundant earthworms in the compost and top soil, they distribute nicely to my goal of at least one worm in each pot -- I rarely have to put them in myself. Other soil denizens like predatory centipedes and nematodes help control the lesser bugs in the soil. 8)

So, I'm used to seeing the surface of all my container soils nice and fluffy/crumbly due to the nightly/constant earthworm activity. The container soils are so porous, and the dry crumbliness of the surface provides mulching effect so that any water poured on the surface disappears immediately, and sometimes, I zone out and can't remember if I had watered the plant moments ago. :wink:

However, among the Famiy Rm grouping of citruses, there are a few containers in which the soil surface is compacted flat. Every time I see them, I get a sense of disorientation -- like "there's something wrong". :?

The reason for the flattened soil? Cats! They like to look out that window, so they walk among the massed pots on the soil to get to the windowsill. Then, the narrow windowsill only accommodates one cat at a time unless they're in a friendly mood (they usually hiss and swat at each other for the space) so one of them crouches ON the soil surface, spanning two pots. So, even though I avoid compacted soil in my outdoor garden, I can't avoid it in my indoor mini citrus orchard! :roll:

Susan W
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Too funny Apple! Be glad your kitties are napping in the pots and not using them as a kitty-box. And be thankful they are sharing the house with you...

Green Thumb
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And, be glad they don't like to eat the leaves. A cat chewed almost all the leaves off a tangerine tree and last year they eradicated some spider plants and did a good job on some toms and peppers.

I love felines, especially babies, but can they be a pain at times.


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Earth worms are great for ontainers

I go to the local playgrounf after a early spring rain and catch 100 night crawlers in 20 min and put a bunch in my seed boxes. The boxes with the worms always do better! I think they ike the leaves in the bottom of the boxes also!

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Don't forget, the cats are allowing you to put pots in the windows to begin with :P

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Re: Helpful Earthworms, UNhelpful cats

..hmmm there might be a better thread than this one, but I don't see it right now.

I've mentioned on other occasions besides the OP of this thread that I put earthworms in most of my containers. Today, I thought I would refresh the soil mix for the overwintered Peru White Hab hot pepper plant because it's starting to wake up and grow new shoots and bloom.

Well, SOMEBODY was perfectly happy in there and the soil mix is full of black crumbly earthworm casting :()
Peru White Hab and resident worm
Peru White Hab and resident worm
. ...not much to do but give the pepper a light pruning, put everything -- and everyone- back and re-seat the plant. I'll scratch some some UCG (used coffee grounds) and ground eggshells into the surface later. :wink:

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