Daylilies forum: What is Digging in Your Daylily Beds?

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Name: Pat Strong
Stone Mountain (Zone 8a)
Region: Georgia Dragonflies Ponds Cut Flowers Dahlias Birds
Orchids Butterflies Garden Photography Houseplants Hummingbirder Daylilies
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Pat236
Jul 28, 2015 12:42 PM CST
Sorry to hear you are having trouble with critters...what is digging in your beds?
Pat236
[Last edited by Pat236 - Jul 30, 2015 10:55 AM (+)]
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Name: Larry
Enterprise, Al. 36330 (Zone 8b)
Region: Alabama Composter Garden Photography Garden Ideas: Master Level Plant Identifier Celebrating Gardening: 2015
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Seedfork
Jul 28, 2015 12:53 PM CST
Well, I have a catch and release trap, and I have caught Armadillos, Possums, and Racoons in it.
I have a long story which I will not go into, but I think the current problem is a Possum, and I think he is a previously convicted felon! Grumbling
Thinking of next year, they are building a new house in the woods behind me: hammering, sawing, yelling, music playing etc. So I go down to the garden this morning to see what needs replanting before the heat sets in for the day, there are two deer, a buck and a doe. They both saw me coming in my bright white T-shirt and stood there watching me, finally the buck ran off, and only when I kept approaching the doe did leave. If all that noise and my walking down there did not deter them, and they have little ones I see another battle brewing.
Name: Donald
Eastland county, Texas (Zone 8a)
Region: Texas Enjoys or suffers hot summers Raises cows Plant Identifier
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needrain
Jul 28, 2015 1:01 PM CST
I want your possum. For some reason I haven't been seeing them for the last 3-4 years. Prior to that they were plentiful. I even had one that I kept hanging around the house that I named Cyclops because he only had one eye. Absolutely he was the ugliest possum I've ever seen and that's saying a lot. Up to 25% of their diet can be copperheads. Those are one of their preferred foods. The copperheads have been plentiful the last couple of years. Wonder if there are rules about shipping wild, captured animals through the post office? Smiling
Donald
Name: Larry
Enterprise, Al. 36330 (Zone 8b)
Region: Alabama Composter Garden Photography Garden Ideas: Master Level Plant Identifier Celebrating Gardening: 2015
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Seedfork
Jul 28, 2015 1:13 PM CST
Donald, what is your mailing address?,,,,I take that back, did you say Copperheads? I have plenty of those too if you need anymore, maybe they would lure the possums back?
Name: Joy Wooldridge
Kalama, Wa. (Zone 8b)
Sunset Zone 6, Heat zone 4,
Garden Photography Organic Gardener I was one of the first 300 contributors to the plant database! Region: Pacific Northwest Daylilies Lilies
Bulbs Plant Lover: Loves 'em all! Seed Starter Container Gardener Plant and/or Seed Trader Cat Lover
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Joy
Jul 28, 2015 4:17 PM CST
What are copperhead? Sense I've not heard of them, we must not have them here. But we have plenty of possums. I understand they eat slugs and snails too.
No two gardens are the same. No two days are the same in one garden. ~Hugh Johnson
Name: Larry
Enterprise, Al. 36330 (Zone 8b)
Region: Alabama Composter Garden Photography Garden Ideas: Master Level Plant Identifier Celebrating Gardening: 2015
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Seedfork
Jul 28, 2015 4:18 PM CST
Joy.
http://www.click2houston.com/news/texas-couples-property-ove...
Name: Donald
Eastland county, Texas (Zone 8a)
Region: Texas Enjoys or suffers hot summers Raises cows Plant Identifier
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needrain
Jul 28, 2015 4:19 PM CST
Seedfork said:Donald, what is your mailing address?,,,,I take that back, did you say Copperheads? I have plenty of those too if you need anymore, maybe they would lure the possums back?


What?? You're going to send me copperheads for a bonus or substitute? Rolling on the floor laughing No thanks! I have enough of those. I just seem to currently be out of possums for unknown reasons. I'm not seeing them anywhere. Everything else still visits the yard. Two fox kits seen this week were the most recently seen visitors. I don't know if the drought is the cause, but the disappearance corresponded with it. If you have copperheads, you ought to consider leaving the possums in peace. Other than the occasional chicken or egg, they aren't likely to do any real damage. They are really interesting mammals, just not a very pretty one. I've never had them bother the plants.
Donald
Name: Larry
Enterprise, Al. 36330 (Zone 8b)
Region: Alabama Composter Garden Photography Garden Ideas: Master Level Plant Identifier Celebrating Gardening: 2015
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Seedfork
Jul 28, 2015 4:21 PM CST
They don't care for the plants, just that the worms are there and the plants are in the way.
Name: Donald
Eastland county, Texas (Zone 8a)
Region: Texas Enjoys or suffers hot summers Raises cows Plant Identifier
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needrain
Jul 28, 2015 4:30 PM CST
That sounds more like armadillo damage here. My mulch looks like a moonscape. It's amazing they can root so much and so deep, but usually without any significant damage to the plants. Except when they decide to dig a den hole, then a large plant is in danger. They can also tip over a container digging under and around it. That's been a problem lately. Especially those small pots with daylily seedlings that I sat in a mulched area. It's almost routine to have to set them back upright in the mornings. Armadillos are another interesting creature. Also not pretty Big Grin .
Donald
Name: Larry
Enterprise, Al. 36330 (Zone 8b)
Region: Alabama Composter Garden Photography Garden Ideas: Master Level Plant Identifier Celebrating Gardening: 2015
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Seedfork
Jul 28, 2015 5:37 PM CST
I have had armadillo damage before, they are much worse than a possum. Armadillos can dig up one plant and cover up another one at the same time. Possums just dig around the roots, dislodge the plant and leave it there. With an armadillo I may never find the plant again.
Name: Becky
Sebastian, Florida (Zone 10a)
Celebrating Gardening: 2015 Daylilies Hummingbirder Butterflies Seed Starter Container Gardener
Charter ATP Member I was one of the first 300 contributors to the plant database! Garden Ideas: Master Level Lover of wildlife (Black bear badge) Birds Ponds
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beckygardener
Jul 29, 2015 6:28 AM CST
I had no idea that possums eat copperhead rattlesnakes! Wow! I am glad to have them around, too!

I have a lot of critters here, except I've never seen deer in or near my yard. Only the smaller critters. I leave them all alone. I don't mind as long as they have manners and don't destroy my garden. The only critter that I am having a real problem with and have been dealing with them on and off for years is rats! Ugh! They like my backyard because of the fence where they feel safer from larger predators. (Where is my owls when I need them????!) Their newest offense is chewing holes in the screen of my porch to get into my back porch area! Grrrrrrr ......!!!! Grumbling Grumbling Grumbling
What lies behind us and what lies before us are tiny matters, compared to what lies within us.
Garden Rooms and Becky's Budget Garden
Name: Larry
Enterprise, Al. 36330 (Zone 8b)
Region: Alabama Composter Garden Photography Garden Ideas: Master Level Plant Identifier Celebrating Gardening: 2015
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Seedfork
Jul 29, 2015 6:33 AM CST
Copperheads are actually not rattlesnakes...just snakes.They are normally very small around here, love to come out at night, blend right into the leaves and don't have a rattle to warn you. So stepping on them is the real danger.
Name: Cynthia (Cindy)
Melvindale, Mi (Zone 5b)
Hybridizer Irises Butterflies Charter ATP Member Birds Cat Lover
Region: United States of America Region: Michigan Vegetable Grower Daylilies Hummingbirder Heucheras
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Hemlady
Jul 29, 2015 6:34 AM CST
Rats are a pain for sure. They like my yard too Becky because there is a lot of cover for them to hide. They chewed a hole in our wooden garage door last summer. Haven't seen too many this summer thankfully, just a bunny.
Lighthouse Gardens
Name: Donald
Eastland county, Texas (Zone 8a)
Region: Texas Enjoys or suffers hot summers Raises cows Plant Identifier
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needrain
Jul 29, 2015 7:27 AM CST
I suppose this thread is headed for the sandbox, but I really think for some of us these are part of gardening just like weeds. They are for me living in the country, for sure. I would note that after being on and around this property for 60+ years, it has been extremely rare for a rattlesnake to supply a warning rattle. That generally occurs after you have disturbed them directly. If you accidently step on one that is quietly trying to stay invisible, the warning rattle is likely to come after the bite. It always makes me nervous when I hear people say they safer than copperheads because of a warning rattle. That's just not true most of the time and rattlesnake bites tend to be more dangerous than a copperhead bite. I have both here and occasionally both are in and around my plants, so I try to pay attention.

See the rattler wrapping at the bottom of the container? I walked by this for about 3 hours before I saw it there. The path goes right by the posts defining the bed.
Thumb of 2015-07-29/needrain/2674d6

This copperhead, which I find more often in the beds, is just resting quietly on the top of the post, but I saw one resting in an iris stalk once.
Thumb of 2015-07-29/needrain/3ee9ee

Smoothing out the damage from an armadillo is when a copperhead nailed me. I know to look and I was, but they really are hard to see and it had sort of snuggled under the loose dirt the armadillo had stirred up. I had trouble finding it even after it bit me. It wasn't a serious bite and I didn't have any serious repercussions, but it cost me a night in the hospital anyway. So life that adapts or even prefers the garden environment is some gardeners should be familiar with. Being allergic to a wasp sting would be every bit as dangerous as the snake bite. Also here are Black Widow spiders who are bad housekeepers making their webs look abandoned. You'd think I'd know that by now, but it still fools me sometimes and I'll use my hand to clear it away. They are particularly fond of stacked stones - and so are the scorpions which only have a wicked sting.

Donald
Name: Becky
Sebastian, Florida (Zone 10a)
Celebrating Gardening: 2015 Daylilies Hummingbirder Butterflies Seed Starter Container Gardener
Charter ATP Member I was one of the first 300 contributors to the plant database! Garden Ideas: Master Level Lover of wildlife (Black bear badge) Birds Ponds
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beckygardener
Jul 29, 2015 7:34 AM CST
Donald - WOW! That is scary. But I agree ... allergies to certain bug bites can be just as or more serious! I don't know if I get copperheads here. We do get Coral Snakes though and I have seen one in my yard. I try to be very careful, but sometimes they are indeed hard to spot easily.
What lies behind us and what lies before us are tiny matters, compared to what lies within us.
Garden Rooms and Becky's Budget Garden
Name: Joy Wooldridge
Kalama, Wa. (Zone 8b)
Sunset Zone 6, Heat zone 4,
Garden Photography Organic Gardener I was one of the first 300 contributors to the plant database! Region: Pacific Northwest Daylilies Lilies
Bulbs Plant Lover: Loves 'em all! Seed Starter Container Gardener Plant and/or Seed Trader Cat Lover
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Joy
Jul 29, 2015 4:06 PM CST
I'm so glad we don't have any of those here. We have lots of garter snakes. But they're harmless. Only scary thing I can think of that we have here are the hobo and brown recluse spiders.
No two gardens are the same. No two days are the same in one garden. ~Hugh Johnson
Name: Cynthia (Cindy)
Melvindale, Mi (Zone 5b)
Hybridizer Irises Butterflies Charter ATP Member Birds Cat Lover
Region: United States of America Region: Michigan Vegetable Grower Daylilies Hummingbirder Heucheras
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Hemlady
Jul 29, 2015 4:29 PM CST
Oh gosh, I think I would rather deal with spiders than snakes.
Lighthouse Gardens
Name: Joy Wooldridge
Kalama, Wa. (Zone 8b)
Sunset Zone 6, Heat zone 4,
Garden Photography Organic Gardener I was one of the first 300 contributors to the plant database! Region: Pacific Northwest Daylilies Lilies
Bulbs Plant Lover: Loves 'em all! Seed Starter Container Gardener Plant and/or Seed Trader Cat Lover
Image
Joy
Jul 29, 2015 4:46 PM CST
Me too Cindy. But the hobo and brown recluse are very poisonous. Not your normal spider. So you do have to be very careful around them. The hobo will move inside in the fall. They are not a spider you want to live with. Hilarious!
No two gardens are the same. No two days are the same in one garden. ~Hugh Johnson
Name: Gale
CentralWa (Zone 6a)
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GDJCB
Jul 29, 2015 5:57 PM CST
Donald- If the Copper Heads are on the smaller size, you may want to get a couple barn cats, they do a good job of killing small snakes, even the venomous ones.

Name: Donald
Eastland county, Texas (Zone 8a)
Region: Texas Enjoys or suffers hot summers Raises cows Plant Identifier
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needrain
Jul 29, 2015 6:30 PM CST
Chickens do a pretty good job too, Gale. Unfortunately the days of having small dogs and cats outside too much is that they become food for coyotes. No more barn cats. Dumped cats and feral cats don't last very long. But cats will certainly harass a snake into leaving if nothing else.
Donald

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