Monday, May 14, 2012

We Have a Digger

Everything was going so well in both gardens. 
The potato tower is over the top, literally.  I have to add boards 
and start filling with straw or a combination of straw/dirt.  
These are boards my husband made out of our cedar tree.  Now, they are not
so straight because, unless dried, they will twist.  I'm making a potato tower, not furniture
so I don't really mind that it isn't perfect.  
You can see how tall it may get.  

The spinach and chard are doing well.  The spinach may seem sparse, we've been 
eating it up along with the neighboring romaine and butter crunch.

The tomatoes are doing great, EXCEPT, we have a digger!
Something has dug down around the logs that make the raised beds.
It's dug around plants, making one of my green peppers fall off!
It's pushed plants around, not wanting the plant itself.
This is the little kitchen side salad garden.  It got the big garden too.
The raccoon and opossum have never dug like this.  I am wondering, 
just wondering if it could be an armadillo.  We see more and 
more of these along side the road.  They must be coming up from Arkansas.
I checked on the internet and it says they love worms.  Boy, have we got worms!
They hate hot peppers.  Guess what might be sprinkled up at the garden soon?
They also are deterred by human urine.  I guess I can recruit some guys to help out there, 
I think I'll pass.  LOL

It hasn't bothered the grapes yet, neither have we seen the Japanese beetles.

The big garden. 
Raised beds made from felled trees.
I planted herbs in the top section.  This may change but for now, here they are.
It's amazing soil but it didn't start out that way.  Rocks, all rocks.
We layered it with manure, straw, leaves, a load of dirt and whatever else we could 
throw on it.  Now, rather than rocks and shovels, you can gently push the 
dirt aside to plant.
The digger got to this one, you can see the dirt humped up. 

Tomatoes, peppers, marigolds and tomatillo.
The digger was here too.
The section to the right, just one level down from the upper bed is
a very loose soil area.  I have onions and garlic there.

See here, it was digging under the trees to find the grubs, worms and/or lizzards.

Can you see the wire going across the bed, just above the cat? 
That's fishing line.  
We discovered the deer can't see it.  Neither can I.
That's why I have an orange ribbon on it- to remind me to duck!
When the deer walk up to it, it's as if something pokes them about chest level,
chest level to a deer, you have to remember the height.
They get spooked and leave.
I'll also hang pie tins from jute so they blow in the breeze.
Tom and Taylor plan a scarecrow too.  I'm a little worried about that, 
I've seen those movies.

This bed has more tomatoes, beans, cucumbers, more tomatillo, squash and 
nasturtium. Beans grew up the tepee last year, flowers this year.
We have zucchini squash, yellow squash, acorn and spaghetti squash growing here.
We have pickling cukes plus straight eights. 
The digger has been all around this bed, but didn't disturb anything inside.
The cattle fencing has proved perfect for us.  Easy to tie up tomatoes or 
let the vines grow.

The beans are coming up pretty well.

This is the spare bed, guard cat on duty.
We'll begin to amend that this year.  We've grown some no fail pumpkins and 
zucchini in it before, but nothing intentional, all volunteers.

The compost piles.  It's difficult to see but the little pile in front is hiding the truckloads
behind it.  Truckloads.   This is what the tree trimmers brought us, free.

We have pathways that will accommodate the tractor so we can keep the grass down.
The bed in the rear is for pumpkins (to the left) and things that need more shade (to the right).  
I haven't finished cleaning it yet.  Well, I did once but there are some very fast growing weeds.

We ran a pvc pipe under our gravel drive and then across the side yard. Then we installed a hose bib
so we'd have water from our well.  It is so much easier than carting the water over here and trying to water
everything well enough.

It may not look like much now but once we catch The Digger, we'll have some pretty nice veges in our future.


Michelle said...

Thank you! Thank you! I was looking for a way to keep the deer out of my garden. Without having to put up a full fence.

3rnigerians said...

Your gardens look magnificent. I am soooo jealous. I know you'll get that digger and I look forward to many more awesome garden posts this year. Amazing. You have been BUSY.

Kathy Felsted Usher said...

So far it's worked. Make sure to take the line down once your season has ended that way they won't get used to the line. In the winter they will walk right through. When you put it back up suddenly something changed that they can't figure out. The pie tins help too, especially if you can make sure they hit something to make a noise.

Kathy Felsted Usher said...

This is really unusual digging too. They make a trench along the tree trunks, not just digging in a spot or two for nuts like a squirrel would. In the little garden the raccoon would sometimes dig right after we put new straw in. The straw starts out in the chicken coop so it has a chicken smell, as if we were planting chicken!

Candy C. said...

What a great garden!! Love the deer deterrent tip too! I hope you catch the digger soon.

LindaG said...

Your place is looking great. I agree. All your hard work is paying off. :o)

We have holes like that out at the farm, too. Hope today is going well for you!

Carrie P. said...

Your garden is looking great. I have one going this year. It has been a while since I have planted one but I am enjoying it a lot.
We just got deer fence that we ordered on line. I have broccoli covered with row cover at this time trying to keep the deer and rabbit away but somehow a rabbit found a opening and ate 7 plants.
I have a digger too. I don't have armadillo around here so mine is either a squirrel or the neighbor's dog. Once I get the fence up I hope things will grow without the critters bothering the garden.
Good luck with yours.

Kathy Felsted Usher said...

I'm sorry you have a digger too. I'd like to try row covers sometime too.

Kranky Granny said...

Your photos show a beautiful property and a very busy and active life. We have downsized to a small condo in town so I do not have a garden anymore. But, I do have strawberry's growing in a big barrel and tomato plants in a pots on my patio. But, I also have something that likes to dig in the flower pot beside my picnic table in the yard. Every plant I have put there this year ends up dug out on the ground. I have used this same planter for years with no problem so I suspect the new neighbors cat has decided to make that planter his litter box. I just have not found a plant it will not bother.

Thanks for the visit to my Amish country post. Nice to meet a fellow blogger from my own area.

Jenny said...

Oh man. I remember those diggers. Have you tried human from a beauty shop or barber?

Kathy Felsted Usher said...

I think we figured it out. I get up very early, about 4 AM and the windows were all open since it was a beautiful night. Suddenly there was a tapping, as if something were beating on a metal drum. I went outside on the balcony but couldn't see anything. Pretty soon there was a crash, bam, boom! Caught him! It is a raccoon but a new one. He's young and found the chicken food trashcan with the locking lid-and unlocked it. He is probably eating worms and grubs in the garden, rooting around the timber side rails. I may have to string up some wire down low to keep him out (yeah, right, keep a raccoon out!)

Kathy Felsted Usher said...

I loved you site! We had diggers in pots and purchased some screening cut to fit the pot if you have something growing out of the middle but not if it takes up the entire area. You bury it just slightly beneath the dirt. It won't stop a cat from going to the bathroom but they will hit metal screening if they decide to dig.

Catawissa Gazetteer said...

It wasn't just screening, it was metal lathe. It's a lot more robust than screening. You should be able to find it at your local hardware store in the area that you'd find plaster. That is, if your hardware store still sells plaster. Lowe's and Home Depot should have it. The next challenge will be explaining it to the young children they hire at the big box stores. Most know nothing about old timey things like plaster. Here's a link to Lowe's, maybe that'll help:

Kranky Granny said...

Thanks for the suggestion. I will give that lathe a try. Can't have a animal spoiling my flowers.

Kranky Granny said...

I will try the lathe. Can't have a animal spoiling my flowers. Thants for the suggestion.