Sunday, June 28, 2009

What happened to our lettuce? And our broccoli?

Saturday afternoon was my first trip to our community garden plot since returning home Friday after an overnight trip to DC. When I saw that the tips of our lettuce leaves had been broken off, I have to admit that my first thought (or maybe I said it out loud) was, "Doesn't Geoff know how to pick lettuce?" But then I saw that the tip of one of the broccoli leaves also had been ripped off. It seemed strange that Geoff would have tried to harvest a broccoli leaf. When I got home, I asked Geoff, "Um, did you pick some lettuce while I was gone?" When he shook his head, I panicked. What had gotten into our lettuce? When we planted our garden, we put up a fence around our entire plot. We even buried it and used metal stakes to secure it into the ground so that critters wouldn't be able to eat our food. When I checked my email later that afternoon, I saw that I had a message from Katherine, one of our community garden sages. She wrote, "So I was just out in the garden and it looks like a groundhog got into your garden." I felt my blood pressure rise as I kept reading. It turns out that a groundhog got into our plot through slits in our fence, probably made by the University of Michigan Northwood grounds maintenance crew who weed-wack around the fence. Katherine, who also happens to be a friend, repaired our fence for us by patching the slits with pieces of fencing material and garden-variety twist ties. I was thankful and thought that our groundhog problem had been resolved. But when I went to check on our garden this morning, I saw that the bottom of our "door" had been pushed aside and found our broccoli plant standing near-naked with its leaves eaten away. I am not happy.


Edward Vielmetti said...

do you know this song?

hey woody woodchuck woody woodchuck woody wood
i'd love to feed you if I could
woody woodchuck woody woodchuck woody wood please
oh please don't eat my broccolis

I'm trying to remember who sang it, it's a kids song, we have it on repeat on the CD in the car

Christine said...

Woodchucks can be very determined once they discover a source of free food! Try covering your crops with either floating row cover (Check or bird netting (at any garden center). They aren't pretty but are effective!


Betty said...

I don't know that woodchuck song but I'd love to hear it! If you remember who the artist is, can you please post the name?

Betty said...

Thanks for the tip, Chris. I will get some of that row cover or netting. Geoff bought some tent stakes to secure the fence to the ground and our door is now tied shut in several places.

fyek said...

I've been vigilantly watching our gardens this morning (so busy over here), and they are trying very hard to get in--so far to no avail. It looks like they even nibbled on the fence in a couple of places. I'm thinking about buying a firearm...

petersteel said...

that was big problem for garden owner..i think u should use netting bird and bird deterrents i hope that will work.... for more information regarding bird control,bird repellent,netting bird,pest bird control u can visit

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