Critters and gremlins in the patch

Discussion in 'Fruit & Vegetable Growing' started by DTK, Oct 3, 2019.

  1. DTK

    DTK Well-Known Member Premium Member GOLD

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    Good morning all. I grow our veg garden in a cage (exclusion area) and over recent times managed to exclude most food eating critters (possums etc.) I produced about 200 tomato seedlings over winter in the cage and planted about 5 plants in the cage.

    Inspired by many of you, I decided to conduct a new experiment with critters and gremlins.

    I made a new veg garden nearby and planted a 5m row of tomatoes then covered them with shade cloth. All good, no critters got near them.

    On Tuesday I planted another two rows of tomatoes with basil interspersed around them. These were left uncovered.

    Unfortunately, when I checked first thing yesterday, all my plants (not covered) were chewed back to a few stalks. Some basil plants had a leaf or two remaining but essentially the patch was destroyed. Without night monitoring I assume possums.

    Critters and Gremlins ... 1
    Dan ... Nil

    Back to the drawing board I guess.

    Happy gardening, everyone!
     
  2. ClissAT

    ClissAT Valued Member Premium Member GOLD

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    Gremlins- critters 1:ROFL:

    Bandicoots are my big issue right now, followed by king parrots!

    Bit mostly the problem is due to the drought.
    There's just nothing for the critters to eat in the bush.
    Now the normal course of action for critters in a drought would be that they would move on or starve and perhaps die.
    But add humans to the mix with our freshly watered and dug gardens, and the critters have an endless supply of favourable food!
    They will adapt to eating any flavour be it mild or vigorous because they don't have the enormous numbers of taste buds that humans do.
    Its why chili doesn't really work as a deterrent.
    Humans have by far the greatest number of capsunin receptors, not only on our tongues but also in the skin around our mouths.
    Animals have very few so the bright red fruits appeal to birds, etc.
     
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  3. Letsgokate

    Letsgokate Valued Member Premium Member GOLD

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    The things we have to do to protect our hard earn produce. Haven’t had possums with the veggies, but rats yes. Possums like the fruit trees, on going battle.
     
  4. DTK

    DTK Well-Known Member Premium Member GOLD

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    I suspect the poor critters are just so darn hungry and thirsty. I arrived back home today and the grass is even more brown and crisp; just walking on it feels almost like shards of stiff plastic. The wind had blown the cover off my potatoes (despite rocks) and something (possums ?) have eaten most of them back to the ground. As sad as it is to see the land like this (I can only imagine how it is for farmers who lose everything, including livelihood), it is also very sad knowing that our wildlife is struggling too.
     
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  5. Karen Awynydd

    Karen Awynydd Member Premium Member

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    Hi folks, I am new to the forum so still catching up on all the threads. I read somewhere that mint can deter rats as they don't like the smell. Is this true? And do marigolds work for possums?
     
  6. DTK

    DTK Well-Known Member Premium Member GOLD

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    Hi Karen. Welcome to our community.
    I am by no means an expert, but I have mint growing in my garden and it doesn't seem to deter my little critters. Maybe they adapt... ;)
     
  7. ClissAT

    ClissAT Valued Member Premium Member GOLD

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    Hi Karen, welcome!:wave:
    Short answers are No and No!! ;):whistles:

    Best defence is a strong frame covered with steal mesh small enough to keep rodents out.
    Nothing less will stop the blighters!
    Or continuous baiting for the rodents.
     
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