This story simply has to be shared with our gardeners. Unbelievable, but true (I am still recovering from my state of anger, the sadness, and yes, the happiness of catching these critters)!
Monday morning I headed out to enjoy a cup of coffee on my patio and discovered one of my beautiful herb pots had been visited by some critter during the night (obviously it enjoyed digging in the dirt). This critter had completely dug out my thyme, uprooted the parsley, and left a pile of soil laying in a heap on my front patio. So, what does this wife do? I called my husband and told him to bring a live trap home so we can catch this critter “NOW”. I was determined I wasn’t going to wake up the next morning and see the same damage done to my plants.
Tuesday morning arrives, and “YES” we have something in the trap, a big raccoon. My husband takes the trap and heads off to continue the “catch and release” somewhere far away from my garden and front patio (didn’t ask where – didn’t really care). Now I am feeling pretty happy. No more worries about my plants getting dug up and damaged.
I head to my garden on Wednesday morning (now a daily routine) and see strange tracks by the strawberry plants. I look to my right, and some of my cabbage plants are half dug out, and part of a row of spinach missing. There, in box #2, was a “HUGE” hole some critter had dug in the soil.
I must admit, the trip back to the house was a sad one. If you are a gardener, you know the time and effort that goes into gardening. It is tough to see destroyed and damaged plants! I could not figure out what critter would dig a hole, that size, in my garden bed.
Wednesday evening (same day), I look out towards my garden, and I see a big snapping turtle crawling out of my garden box where the tomatoes and peppers are planted. I couldn’t believe the size of the turtle! Once again I called on my husband to carry out another “catch and release” (he had just arrived home from a long day of working in the sun so was not thrilled about this plan).
Not even one hour later, I look out my kitchen window and snapping turtle number two is crawling out of my potato plants. I dashed to my garden (quite dismayed, or should I say angry) and here the snapping turtle had crawled over several of my potato plants, leaving my plants looking like a bunch of twisted pretzels.
To the house I go, to yet again, get my dear loving husband to do another “catch and release.” Believe me, he was not impressed with my request. We quickly headed back to the garden to make sure we didn’t lose sight of the turtle, and no joking, off to our right, is another snapping turtle slowly making its way across the lawn. I turned to my husband and asked, “Can there be any more?” He gently told me apparently it’s time for turtles to lay their eggs and they’re out in full force (UGH). “And what is my garden going to look like in the morning?” No response.
After expressing a few more comments about all these critters (I was in such a huff, I didn’t even think about taking photos), my husband looked at me and said, “I guess we need to get a fence around the garden.” “Yes, we do!”
I checked my garden early this morning, and no signs of critters. I guess we will see what the next few weeks bring. If you don’t see a blog post for a couple of days, I might be busy building a big fence around my garden.
Take heart gardeners, keep on pressing on. We will win this battle and have fresh produce on our tables!