What do you do when for the third day in a row you go out to water the garden and find another plant has gone missing? Completely vanished without a trace. That makes twelve plants now; two strawberries, two lemon cucumbers, my crookneck squash and seven bush beans.
1. Kick yourself for being too lazy to line that last huge (and important) garden bed with layers of thick cardboard and not gopher wire like the others. Same with the strawberries.
2. Frantically build a smaller bed out of scrap wood at nine in the morning, thinking I will transplant some of the endangered plants into that one. Then smashing my finger with the hammer because I was in a frenzy. As I nurse my finger I realize transplanting established tomatoes, cucumbers and squash plants is not going to work well anyway.
3. Rush to the local hardware store to scour their last dying bits of veggie starts in the hope that there will be a few healthy ones left. Luck was finally with me and a truck was unloading new plants when I arrived. I went totally overboard and grabbed 8 new tomatoes and 2 cucumber plants.
4. Get home, pull the plants out of the car in time to realize I have no place for all these tomatoes and if the gophers somehow don’t eat my tomatoes in the backyard I am going to have tomatoes coming out my ears this year. I decide to harvest and pull out the peas, which are about to die off anyway, and plant 4 tomatoes in the wine barrel and the smaller bed.
5. After a quick look at the larger gopher protected bed in the front yard I sacrifice a few carrots to fit more new tomatoes and cucumbers in there.
6. Then go take a nap on the couch because I am pooped!
Now that a couple of days have disappeared (along with more plants) and I have decided to move the entire backyard bed to a wire protected spot. The zucchini, tomatoes and beans will probably suffer a bit in the move but if they are left unprotected they’re doomed.
I beg of you, don’t be like me. Line your garden beds with wire and save yourself the heartache, worry and hard work.
Now for the gophers under the front lawn… Any suggestions?