Monday, June 9, 2014

Into the Ground

We're a little behind schedule because of our whole chipmunk debacle (at least I think they were chipmunks) in the greenhouse, but we are finally getting our seedlings into the ground. As I mentioned, we have several garden plots so we're hoping that between them all, we'll get some fruits of our labors. The more the better, in my eyes.

Our main tomato area is near the library, where we procured an additional half plot. I put almost all tomatoes in there, with a couple of squash for good measure. I figure I'll direct the squash in a certain direction so as to not impose on other people's space. The plants have been in for a couple of days and so far, so good. There are critters over there, no doubt, but somehow it's not as bad as everywhere else. It's a pretty high-trafficked area. The big library plot is R's domain, and she's got all sorts of good stuff going like beans and peas and some cucumbers. Not so much tomatoes because we are trying to rotate our crops.

We also have the garden plot at the flower farm but there is a resident colony of woodchucks and I've been led to be believe that they help themselves to whatever is growing. In fact, I spoke with one guy who said he lost everything last year. Bummer. I am planning on putting tomatoes and squash into that plot, but I am not sure what to expect. They are making efforts to alleviate the pests, but it's hard if not impossible to beat out Mother Nature.

Then we have our backyard plot, which is actually nice and you can't beat the convenience of the location, but like the flower farm, there is a resident colony of woodchucks that lives adjacent to it. I see them all the time. Whatever we plant will be fair game, so I don't have high hopes for that one, either. To get around this, we have three strategies. First off, we have the high tech solution thanks to J&RR. They sent us this really cool high frequency emitter that probably uses technology developed by NASA and the CIA and is supposed to drive the woodchucks mad. I'm very interested in seeing how effective it is. The kids are fascinated by it, especially N, and as crazy as it sounds (no pun intended), they can hear the thing when it emits. I can't, I'm too old, but their young ears are sharp enough to hear it. Pretty impressive.

The second way is to build barriers out of wire. I got some chicken wire and will make cylinders that will go around the individual plants, at least while they are young and vulnerable. The barriers are flimsy, and a little thought will lead to a way around them, but hopefully groundhogs aren't too thoughtful. The final way is the evolutionary method: plant tons of plants and hope that at least some of them will weather the storm. Hopefully the combination of all these methods will yield some of the proverbial fruits for our labors. We shall see.

Until then, thanks for reading, and thanks to Tico for the pic.

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