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rainbowgardener
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GRR!!

Apparently I am gardening mainly for the benefit of the local critters! About three weeks ago I put a row of broccoli transplants in the ground, that I had started from seed indoors in Jan. They have been thriving, going strong through late snows and frosts and everything. Now the weather is beautiful and I went out in the garden and discovered that the woodchuck (or groundHOG as Applestar likes to say!) had been by and chewed every one of them almost down to the ground. I recognize her handiwork!

My fault I guess, I didn't get them caged in. I should have known I needed to. But I don't know whether to cry or gnash my teeth (or some of both). All those beautiful broccoli plants grown for most of a couple months, just to feed the woodchuck!

I want a real garden. I'm getting a little tired of my attempts to garden a city lot over-run with woodland critters. I want a real garden with a good fence around it!!
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applestar
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OH NO!!! :( and :evil:

I would not have expected them to be out this early. Maybe my neighbor groundHOGS are not so local, but I usually don't see them until it gets good and hot like after beans are planted or at least until after the dandelions start to bloom. I'm pretty sure their main hibernating burrow is elsewhere and they move into their "summer quarters" under our shed, near all the yummies, after my garden starts to thrive. -- One year, they came and ate all the broccoli the day I was going to come home after work and harvest them. :evil:

I'm so sorry to hear of your disappointing experience. :cry:

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rainbowgardener
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:( -wall-

We need an emoticon for sobbing! After the groundHOG (I guess) ate all my broccoli plants that were planted, I still had more seedlings that would have gone to the church sale. So I replanted 7 more broccoli plants and this time I did put the deer netting all around the bed and fastened it down all around the bottom with earth staples.

Came home from work yesterday to find that all the broccoli plants have again been eaten down to bare stems! The deer netting is still all around the bed (around the edge of the raised bed, not up against the plants), still tight against the ground with the earth staples. Now it's a mystery, who ate them and how they did it. I hadn't sealed the deer netting over the top, but the broccolis were in with the tomato plants and their cages. The deer netting is resting over the top of the cages, just not all hooked together at the top.

I don't really think the groundhog could have gotten to them, though it still looks like her handiwork. Raccoons probably could have, but they would usually tromple things around more. There's no feet prints or mess, just all the broccoli leaves gone. Could insects or caterpillars or something do that in the space of a day? These were good sized, leafy plants.

It's a mystery but I'm very bummed and frustrated. Other years I have grown broccoli just fine, so this is something new, or some critter that was here just discovering a taste for my broccoli.

I want to move and live somewhere with a real garden with a real fence around it! I've done the best I can with my little city lot/ patio/ hillside, but I'm getting tired of it.

Now I don't have any more broccoli seedlings, so I either buy plants or give up on broccoli for this year...
Twitter account I manage for local Sierra Club: https://twitter.com/CherokeeGroupSC Facebook page I manage for them: https://www.facebook.com/groups/65310596576/ Come and find me and lots of great information, inspiration

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applestar
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There's this one: :cry: :cry: :cry:
...but it seems totally inadequate. No doubt Kisal will come along with an appropriately wailing, chest beating emoticon. I'm SO SORRY to hear, and how maddening! :evil:

A hot day heralds groudHOG's arrival around here. We had such a day two days ago, and yesterday, DD9 spotted one near my Dad's garden -- "There's a beaver or something out there...." :x

It's a mystery alright. GroundHOG would likely have messed up the netting.... On the other hand, check for tears in the netting. I resorted to putting a deer netting all the way across my property along the back fence, but my nemesis used to tear the deer netting and slip through. Since I would often chase it all the way across the yard back to the netting, it was pretty comical to see the panicked creature unable to find the torn spot and bounce off the netting. :twisted: I used to hang back just enough so it would "show" me where the tear was so I could repair it. The "scare" was enough to keep it away for a couple of days after. :wink:

Texas.girl
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Location: Western Edge of the Texas Hill Country

I moved to the boonies a little over a year ago. Planted vegetables seeds in several big containers. My zucchini plant was just beginning to flower when one morning I discovered it had been eaten down to 1 inch tall. I was bummed but nothing I could do about it. Planted some more seeds. I managed to get 1 zucchini before winter arrived. This past winter I paid a lot of money and had an 8 foot fence built so I grow a proper garden this year. Hopefully I will reap more than a single zucchini.

Darth Oblio
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Location: Valley Center, California

Re: GRR!!

rainbowgardener wrote:Apparently I am gardening mainly for the benefit of the local critters!
Me too! In my small veggie garden, the peacocks destroy all kinds of things. They carefully eat the blossoms of every squash plant. Sometimes they'll pull an entire plant out and drop it on the ground. Then there are the gophers, they eat from underneath.

Then there's the big garden on the other side of the hill. Gophers, ground squirrels, rabbits galore, and the peacocks fly over there, too. I'm getting good at building wire cages.

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tomf
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I feel your pain Rainbow, every thing I plant has to be protected or has to be some thing they will not eat. I love the critters although.

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rainbowgardener
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I do too and mostly I manage to coexist with them with the help of deer netting. Just that time, some how some of the broccoli got eaten even with the deer netting up. Since then I tightened everything down and no more disappeared. I did actually manage to eat some broccoli out of my garden, but later and less than if the groundHOG hadn't been so tricky this time.

I'm in the process of building a new bed in my FRONT yard. Had a big old panicle dogwood there, but between the cicadas a few years ago and the drought last year (and some other years), it wasn't really making it. Just chain sawed it down. Tonight some guys with an augur come and grind out the roots and presto it will soon be a veggie bed! Two advantages - the critters don't come in the front yard much, because it fronts on a busy street and now that the tree is down, it is pretty sunny. The back is getting too shady as all the trees keep getting bigger. YAY!! more garden space! :)
Twitter account I manage for local Sierra Club: https://twitter.com/CherokeeGroupSC Facebook page I manage for them: https://www.facebook.com/groups/65310596576/ Come and find me and lots of great information, inspiration

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