Ask a Question forum: Lilies eaten over winter

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cfnealy
Apr 3, 2017 9:09 AM CST
All my lily bulbs are gone, just a few shreaded pieces left. From reading it seems that I must have lots of voles. How to get rid of them or keep them away?
I read that I could plant crown imperial plants. Does this Work? How many do I need and what pattern should I plant them in? Tulips also eaten. These were beds that were200 feet apart.
Snowbells are up all over. I just moved to this house last summer and am discovering what is in the overgrown gardens but I saw the lilies last year and they were lovely. I want to replace them but not for just a year.
Name: Suzanne/Sue
Sebastopol, CA (Zone 9a)
Sunset Zone 15
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Calif_Sue
Apr 3, 2017 9:29 AM CST

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All my bulbs are planted in gopher guard baskets.
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Name: Sue
Ontario, Canada (Zone 4a)
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sooby
Apr 3, 2017 10:24 AM CST
Welcome!

Voles can be a real challenge but some years they are worse than others. I tried all the remedies I could find on the internet one year they were particularly bad, and nothing worked. Do you use a lot of mulch? They like to use that for cover. I don't recall them ever eating crown imperials but I don't know if they repel them. Crown imperials are said to repel deer and seem to work for that. I'm not surprised, they smell horrible. The day I picked the bulbs up from the garden centre the car smelled of them for quite some time afterwards Hilarious! Other than a cat or a dog that likes to hunt rodents, I wish I knew the answer too! They don't just eat bulbs, but hosta roots leaving the hosta detached from the ground like a pancake, and newly planted annuals (saw one red-pawed absconding with a marigold, I wouldn't have believed it if I hadn't seen it - over the next week or so it eventually made off with every single marigold plant by nipping through the base of the stem and dragging the plant away to eat in a nearby daylily clump).
Name: Carol
Santa Ana, ca
Sunset zone 22, USDA zone 10 A.
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ctcarol
Apr 3, 2017 9:34 PM CST
Planting Daffodils seems to deflect gophers, but I don't know about voles as we don't have them here.
Name: Sally
central Maryland
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sallyg
Apr 4, 2017 6:10 AM CST
daffodils didnt work for me.
Ditto don't overmulch, do tidy up if needed and take away things they tunnel under- boards on soil surface, loose leaves are things they seem to like as cover for their nefarious acts.
Try soaking pieces of rag with ammonia and sticking them in all holes you can find.
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