Garden Update-The War Rages On

May 17, 2010
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They are trying to dig to China, my garden monsters.
Every night they dig, dig, dig, tunneling under the garden beds in search of literal pay-dirt. My garden pathways, once lined with pristine pea gravel, are now a mix of dirt and gravel, messy and ripe for growing weeds. Our efforts to keep them out by shoring up the bottoms of the beds with more wood have been met with a redoubled digging effort.
But one morning last week may have been the last straw.

The day before, frustrated and angry that I had to keep pushing the dirt back into place, I put large pieces of concrete and scrap wood topped with brick, on the ground around their favorite digging spots. An inelegant solution to be sure, but I wanted to see if it would stop them.
Yes and no.
When I stepped out onto my back patio the …

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Garden Update; Breaking Even with the Monsters

April 24, 2010
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In my previous post about the expense of gardening I know I said I hoped not to have too much more non-plant related expense, but alas, I spoke too soon. 

The digging of the raccoons got to be detrimental to the garden. They were taking out so much soil from the bottom, the beds were sinking! Something had to be done. In the end we decided to add another layer of protection to the base of the beds which also acts as a support since the ground is not exactly level. 

Keeping out the Monsters; Before and After

The new wood seemed to stop the digging for a while, but after a little rain, the ground is softer so they are still digging, though not able to actually get into the beds. Score one for us.  Since they could no longer get in from below, they crawled up inside, to …

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Garden update; the Octopus in my Garden

May 16, 2009
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gardenoctopus Today we finished the irrigation project. Every plant now has an ugly black rubber tube leading to a low-flow drip irrigation end. It will save water and keep me from having to lug the hose from plant to plant. But the manifolds (1 for each bed) looks like an octopus, albeit a 12 legged one, snaking tiny black tentacles throughout the beds.

Yes, we still have intrusions by the monsters raccoons . But they seem to be more random and sometime we go days without seeing any activity from them. I found a way to keep them from eating the pieces of potato I was trying to grow; I started the potatoes in pots and then transplanted them when they got to be about 4″ tall. So far, so good. I’ve done the same with onions, though I may leave those in the pot because it looks kinda cool.

Some …

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Garden Update; Still Battling the Monsters

May 4, 2009

We are still fighting the good fight against the raccoons.
They tear down my fence, I repair it.
I sprinkle pepper everywhere, they use it to season the onions they steal from my garden.
I buy “Critter-Repellent” which contains the urine of larger predators, they reply by leaving poop in my garden pathways.

Actually, to be fair, it seemed as if the Critter Repellent worked, at least for about 5 days, and then they came back with a vengeance, breaking the bamboo posts, tearing down the netting, and digging big holes. In the process they destroyed most of the newly planted seedlings I’d gown myself. I’ve ordered more of the repellent and put out more pepper in the meantime. They haven’t been back for a few days so I’m keeping my fingers crossed.

tomato050209 Out of all the tomatoes I planted, some are doing quite well, with fruit already, and some, …

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The Ongoing Saga of the Monsters in My Garden

April 18, 2009

I have finally figured out what the “Little Monsters” are in my garden.
The clue was the single footprint on the side wall of one of my raised beds.
Well, the footprint, holes dug into the garden 8″ deep, and plant seedlings tossed about with wild abandon were all clues.
Black pepper and Cayenne sprinkled on the ground around the plants did not deter them so I decided we needed to step up the plant protection. I didn’t want to do anything which might harm them either, despite some of the suggestions I got from people. I also didn’t want an ugly fence which would disturb my view and potentially block sunlight from the plants. So I settled on a compromise solution.

I bought bird netting and bamboo stakes from Home Depot. I did a test on one of the beds, putting the stakes on the inside of the …

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