The Q&A Archives: Animals chewed tops of my veggies

Question: I noticed that the tops of my peppers and strawberry plants disappeared last night! To top it off, I found a half eaten cucumber lying on the garden bed floor! I went out and bought chicken wire to keep them out from this point on. I wanted to know if the plants should be tossed or will they re-bloom? It literally looks like somethign came by my veggie bed and took a hedger/trimmer and swipped all the tops off of only those two items leaving the plant stems in place! The only thing missing were the foliage/flowers that the veggies blossom from Everything else was too well established/large and I think the critters went for what was closest to the ground.

Answer: Based on your description I am not certain what chewed your plants although it might have been a groundhog or woodchuck. The strawberries should recover as long as you are able to keep them watered this summer. The peppers might not recover. Both would benefit from a topdressing of compost and perhaps a little extra fertilizer. Do not go overboard, though, since you do not want to burn the plants.

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