Gardening where the sidewalk ends

@#$(*& Squirrel!!??!! November 3, 2008

Dear Mr. (Ms.?) Squirrel –

I’m not sure when your antics in my garden ceased to become amusing or even merely annoying and crossed over into infuriating. Perhaps it was when you dug up every last daffodil bulb I carefully planted last year and ate one bite out of each, leaving the rest to rot. Or maybe it was when you oh so casually decapitated all of my sunflowers long before summer was over.

Let’s see, it could have been when you rooted around in my newly planted salad seed sprouts, disturbing pretty much every one so that they died (popsicle sticks mark heads of rows which once held many mesclun seedlings):

Squirrel-destroyed seedlings

Or was it when you dug up half my chard starts, ruining my circular planting pattern?

Squirrel-dug chard

In any case, this weekend was the last straw. You didn’t even let me get a decent, daylight picture of the jack-o-lanterns my daughter carved before you grotesquely gnawed on their eye sockets

Squirrel-eaten pumpkin


Squirrel-chewed pumpkin

and completely absconded with the top of her “grandpa pumpkin” which was about the cutest thing I’d ever seen.

Squirrel got this one too

At least you didn’t get her lion-silhouette one, or at least not yet. I think I’ll have to bring that one in.

Lion pumpkin

Oh, and thanks for leaving the disgusting mess for me to clean up, possibly with industrial-strength bleach since my kid spends a lot of time touching stuff on that porch and your germs are probably pretty alarming.

So, it’s official. I hate you! Even though I know you are just doing your job, storing up fat to survive the winter. There’s so much food around that I don’t care about, why don’t you take some of the neighbor’s unused apples, or try to remember where you buried your million acorns earlier this fall? I’m almost to the point where I’m ready to get out the Have-a-Heart humane trap and go find you a new home, somewhere far, far away…

Anyone else tangling with critters lately? Any non-violent anti-squirrel advice to share?


11 Responses to “@#$(*& Squirrel!!??!!”

  1. easygardener Says:

    What can I say. I’m trying not to laugh. No I am laughing. I can’t help it 🙂
    I do think the pumpkin gnawing is a gem. You do realise that the squirrels are sitting in the trees watching you – and co-ordinating their next attack using mobile phones.
    Don’t negotiate a truce, it won’t work!
    Are they frightened of scarecrows I wonder?

  2. Racquel Says:

    It is funny but it isn’t! lol I’m sorry that those little beasts are driving you crazy at the moment.

  3. Megan Says:

    I am just learning since I started following garden blogs this year what a nuisance squirrels can be. I had NO idea.
    Nice pumpkins, though. I’m amazed at how many you had. I’m too lazy to even do one.

  4. Shibaguyz Says:

    OMG ROTFLMAO! Not to laugh at your pain but that one made me snort! I’m home sick today and that laugh was just what the doctor ordered… thank you.

    Along the lines of non-violent methods of squirrel control, we have some good ones!

    1. Get a Shiba Inu… or two. Seriously, the Shibaboyz don’t let anything get by them. We had a squirrel last year that we fed sunflower heads to just for the laugh of watching him carry them around. But the one time he started to cross the fence into the tree, the boyz were nearly up the tree themselves hunting him. They jumped at him and he did a wild balancing dance before falling off the fence and landing in the alley where he ran like the wind. Haven’t seen him since.

    2. Get a big ol’ Maine Coon Cat. Hera hunts pretty ferociously in the back yard. She’s 17 years old but still gets around back there when there is a stray critter to be seen. Of course now, her prowling has become a signal for the boys to dart out the back door and disrupt her stalking. Still… she’s good as part of the team for deterring such interlopers.

    3. Okay, probably more useful: Hot peppers. Bait up one of your pumpkins and your plants with a spray made from hot peppers. Mist the concoction on your plants and other squirrel edibles and the little buggers will only get one bite before they start sneezing and pawing at their face. It doesn’t do any permanent damage to the critter (maybe some mental anquish) and it keeps other pests at bay as well. Aphids and slugs HATE the stuff as do earwigs and any other gnawing bugs.

    Best of luck to you… oh… and don’t go all squirrelly on us. LOL Oh that was good… *ahem* sorry… LOL

  5. cherry Says:

    I too am sorry for your trouble but I sure got a good belly laugh out of your pictures/troubles and the comment from the Shibaguyz

    thanks for the smiles ..

    try the pepper spray it has worked for us in the past ..

  6. Philip Says:

    Oh my goodness, he is a terror!
    I have named him vandal, but perhaps that is too cute for him!
    on a serious note,the bleach is a good idea to protect your daughter.
    I am sorry about your predicament. We have a squirrel proof birdfeeder now and that has lessened the activity.

  7. Kara S Says:

    Thanks for stopping by Garden Vines today. =) I wish my beautiful marigolds were still blooming but our frost killed them about two weeks ago.

    I was curious to see your pumpkins – I’m so sorry!!! Maybe the squirrels thought the pumpkins needed to look a little scarier? I love the lion one – hopefully it will survive the mayhem.

    If you live in an area where you could have a cat or small dog, I’d definitely go that route. Shibaguyz had some other good suggestions and I like your idea of a Have-a-Heart trap.

  8. Aerie-el Says:

    Poor jack-o-lanterns. Although now they look even scarier (says she, ever the glass-half-full optimist)!
    To keep squirrels away from my ‘special’ bulbs, I place sliced jalapenos (I wear latex gloves for slicing and placing them in the hole) next to the bulbs when I plant them. I partially fill in the hole with soil, then cut chicken wire a couple inches larger than the diameter of where the bulbs are and place that down on the partially-filled hole. I finish covering the planting area with soil, and no one even notices a difference. It is a bit of work, but it seems to be effective…
    Good luck!

  9. Curmudgeon Says:

    They eat pumpkins?!?! I had no idea. It sure needs some table manners too! –Curmudgeon

  10. Squirrels! They dug up my newly seeded buffalo grass lawn this year.

    Still, there’s something to be said for how much they like to “sample” things. Kind of like taking a bite out of each choclate in the box…

  11. Kristi Says:

    Wow, that’s a hungry and dedicated squirrel. Your best bet would to make the pepper spray like someone mentioned above.
    It’s pretty easy to make especially if you were already growing peppers in your garden.

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