Friday, November 22, 2013

The squirrels got a good deal on 120 tiny little snacks this fall!


Squirrels -- cute, right? I used to think so, too!

So, my 175 bulbs that I planted -- the squirrels didn't touch the daffodils, but it looks like they dug up a fair amount of the crocus bulbs. "Nice little snacks, and how nice of that lady to bury them just where we could find them!" Arghh!

On Veteran's Day, one of my daughters and I went out and replanted another 60 bulbs. Then we covered the whole shebang with landscape fabric and weighed it down with stones. At least if the squirrels do find the bulbs, they'll have to work a lot harder this time, if they want to eat any. And so far, the fabric has not been disturbed. I'll pull it back up in February, and sprinkle with whatever I can come up with (cayenne pepper is supposed to deter squirrels), until the bulbs develop roots.

The crocus in our front yard are never bothered much by the squirrels. That may be because the rooted plants make it just difficult enough to not be worth the effort (especially when the nice lady's neighbors so kindly toss out peanuts for the squirrels).

Finally, a use for the landscape fabric that the previous owners left in the garage, 18 years ago!

14 comments:

  1. I feel your pain. We have crocus that pop up everywhere from the squirrels digging and reburying. I just try to consider it a spring surprise. Daffodils usually aren't bothered by the deer either. A good flower to have around.

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    1. Hi live and learn,
      I sure hope that I find some replanted elsewhere in the yard. Mostly what I found so far was half eaten bulbs littering the area where I planted. Daffodils are really my favorite, as they do so well, and the squirrels have no interest. But the crocus give me that reminder that winter will end and warm weather will return, so I keep trying with them.

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  2. Oh, I'm so sorry! I'm glad you could get a few more.

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    1. Hi Brandy,
      I'm an optimist, and am always "surprised" when something like this happens. Oh well! Yes, I'm glad to have found more. And hopefully some of the previously planted crocuses survived, so the area will still look full of bloom in February.

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  3. I have no love for "cute" little squirrels. One year they ate all of the corn growing in our little garden. They took the corn before it was fully ripe enough for us to pick and then hid the evidence of their thievery by throwing the gnawed cobs in the bushes! I feel for you.

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    1. Hi Linda,
      oh! Ouch! That would make me so mad! Squirrels get most of our cherries every year. I must look like a crazy woman, out in the yard, in my robe, chasing them away in the pre-dawn hours!

      We used to think the squirrels were so cute, when we first moved in here. They would come up to the patio doors and beg for food. We even had one come into the house! They don't seem to fear people, like other critters.

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  4. Been there, done that (too many times) and I feel your pain. What the squirrels don't dig out, the rabbits find. One of the hassles of acreage living. I'm starting to put more and more bulbs in pots, which seems to help somewhat.

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    1. Hi Jayne,
      at least I can console myself with the fact that we don't have a rabbit problem, too!
      Bulbs in pots are lovely to have, especially as they tend to bloom earlier for me, and I can place the pots up near a window where I can see them from the warmth of indoors!

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  5. Ha! Well in my experience it's pretty hard to deter a determined squirrel. One year they went after my tomato plants. I tried building ever more complex contraptions to keep them away but it was no use.

    My parents used to have a peach tree and the squirrels loved it. They'd sit in the tree and take a peach... take one bite, toss it on the ground and then pick another! My father would be out there yelling and waving his arms but they were un-phased. They finally dug up the tree and replaced it with something that wouldn't raise my dad's blood pressure! :-)

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    1. Hi Cat,
      I feel for you with your tomato plants. I've done that with pumpkins, put together all kinds of contraptions, netting, booby-traps, just so we'll get some pumpkins too.
      The squirrels do the same thing to our strawberries that they did to your parents' peaches, they pick one of, take a bite, then throw them away! When the kids were younger, I put them to work on squirrel duty. They had to play out by the strawberries and cherries and chase squirrels off, while I got work done in the house. They are persistent little buggers, though. So far, so good on my new crocus. I'll just have to see if I need to replace the crocus with something else that they won't touch.
      I do keep wondering, how would squirrel stew taste?

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  6. Our squirrels haven't tried that trick but we've had our share of bunny thievery and a year ago we had a woodchuck in our garden. They can eat an amazing amount in a short time period. Hopefully I won't offend any critter lovers when I tell you he went to meet his maker ...

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    1. Hi Kris,
      this keeps running through my mind
      "how much wood, would a woodchuck chuck, if a woodchuck could chuck wood?" I don't know what a woodchuck looks like, but I can imagine the frustration.

      We have something called a mountain beaver here, that does a lot of damage to ornamental plantings. But he's an elusive thing, and we haven't been able to trap him or deter him.

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  7. Wow! Is that how durable landscape fabric is? What is that fabric made of that makes it is so durable that it could last 18 years? By the way, does your bulb already grow?

    (editor: the embedded link was edited out. In-comment links are prohibited on this site)

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    1. As the landscape fabric was a partial roll, left in the garage by previous owners, I'm not sure about the fiber content. However, landscape fabric can be made from recycled paper, cotton fibers, jute and sometimes polyester. This "fabric" tears so easily, it feels like it could be a mix of paper and fibers. Landscape fabric breaks down when exposed to the elements (water from rain, mostly) and shouldn't break down while still on the roll, sitting in the garage (as ours was).

      Thanks for your interest. And no, the bulbs won't be up until spring.

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