Now I See It…Now I Don’t ~ The Elusive Gopher

I should have entitled this blog The First Hand Garden Pest Encyclopedia instead of Rosemary, Lavender and Thyme. Each year it seems that I am confronted with a new dilemma in the vegetable/flower patch. This year I thought I had covered all the bases…but what an elusive creature we are confronted with now…

Geomys_bursarius

Plains Pocket Gopher – Wikipedia

I bought two 4 packs of cabbages at our local family owned greenhouse thinking maybe this year…just maybe… I could once again try growing cabbages and succeed. My biggest problem growing them is those little tiny pesty worms.

I planted the 8 cabbages out in the first row in my garden and covered them with netting to prevent the little white moths from laying eggs that hatch those destructive worms. When the leaves grew and started to push mightily against the netting, I removed it, and there they were, 8 really nice leafy cabbage plants.

Then there were seven…

Then there were six…

We have been having a lot of rain here, so it was a couple of days that I didn’t go over to the garden and when I did I was shocked to see only 4 cabbages left and no sign of any intruder. No paw prints…no digging…no leaf parts lying around.

The next day it occurred to me…Could it be the elusive gopher???

I went immediately to the garden and took my shovel to probe in the dirt when I noticed there were only 3 cabbages left. With the shovel I found the hole and then the tunnel. I transplanted the remaining cabbage plants into pots where they would be safe, and then informed my husband who proceeded to look online for options on how to get rid of gophers.

 

IMG_5219Cabbage Plant Repotted

How to Get Rid of Gophers and Moles

Gophers will pull plants down into their tunnels. That’s why it looks like the plants completely disappear.

After reading the above linked article we opted for the granule method. We spread these castor oil granules sparingly around the garden area, and what I found this time was one of my tomato plants had disappeared.

Not having enough patience to wait for the granules to work, I started putting the hose down in holes that I could find to flood out the gophers.

 

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I placed the hose in a little hole and than stood amazed as the water coming out full force from the hose just kept running…down…around…through…who knows where and finally started coming out of a small hole ten feet away in the lawn.

This is what our new project looks like right now. I will update you onΒ  what happens next…

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Oh, and I will also let you know about the snake eating eggs in the chicken coop. It’s not just the garden…

Baby Lamb…Baby Fennel…Blackberries…

I should have titled this Soft-shelled Egg Slush and Green Spinach Smoothies, but I thought I would be nice…;)

No, really, there are some wonderful things going on here, even though it seems we are surrounded by multiple sad situations and even some horrendous circumstances that are going on in the world around us. But I will talk about some of the good things…

The baby lamb…

Addie Lamb

Her mama didn’t have any milk and the other ewes rejected her, so this little lamb is being bottle fed by the shepherd son and in this pic, my little grand-daughter. πŸ™‚

The baby fennel…

Baby Fennel

I’m so excited about this…my goal is to have a crop of fennel. I tried last year and failed. Hope I can do it this year. πŸ™‚ My baby celery is looking good too.

Blackberries…

Yesterday we went over to a wonderful friend’s house, and she gave us about 40 blackberry plants…After we dug them up and brought them home I planted some in two different places…It’s raining today, so this looks a little bleak right now, but I’m hoping to have an incredible blackberry patch this year.

 

Blackberry

Green Spinach Smoothies…

Really, they are not that bad…Along with my lemon juice in the morning, Green Pasture Fermented Cod Liver Oil, and Bone Broth, I have been eating a Green Smoothie every day. This is for my health, and even though I am not completely healed, I’ve made a lot of improvement. Just to share a little…last November I found that my bite was off. One of my wisdom teeth was sore, but other teeth seemed sore as well. My gums were not bleeding, but I couldn’t chew because of my bite. I thought perhaps I had a bad case of TMJ, so I tried relaxing my jaw, and discovered that I clenched my teeth quite a bit. I finally went to the dentist and he gave me a shocking diagnosis. He told me that I had periodontal disease, and that I had to have 3 of my wisdom teeth pulled, and that the other one was not so bad, but we’ll pull that too, and while we’re at it 2 of my molars. That’s 6 teeth!!!Β  I know most people have already had their wisdom teeth pulled, so that may not have been such a big thing to him, but to me it was absolutely shocking. He told me that if I didn’t get this done right away that my face would swell up, and that I needed to get on antibiotics right away.

I went home and started taking colloidal silver instead of an antibiotic. I searched the internet and found lots of testimonies of what many different people did to heal periodontal disease and heal their teeth. I have incorporated almost everything I’ve read about into my diet and routine. But I’ll share that in another post.

For now my green smoothie recipe…

green smoothie

1 apple or 3/4 cup blueberries
1/2 cup water
1/2 cup raw milk
1/2 cup yogurt (vanilla honey)
I scoop raw meal ( Garden of Life)
1 scoop carrot powder
1 tsp. coconut oil
1 cup spinach or kale

Blend this up really well. Sometimes I add a teaspoon of chia seed as well. I can’t always drink the whole thing at one time, so I’ll save some for later in the day. This was really great when I couldn’t chew well. But I can chew now, even though my bite isn’t perfect yet, it is so much better.

Now to the not so nice thing…

Prepare yourself…

This is yucky…

The Soft-shelled Egg…

Today I found this in the nesting box along with a runny egg yolk…

broken

I know it’s so yucky, but I’m thinking that one or both of my easter-egger hens is trying to lay again. They both look so healthy, but haven’t been laying any eggs for about 6 months now. These particular birds were bred to lay a lot of eggs. So again in searching the internet, I found that this can happen as older birds are beginning to lay again. I’m really hoping that is what it is.

My other 6 Marans hens gave me 6 healthy eggs today, so I know it wasn’t them…

eggs

So enough of the good and the bad and the ugly…

I hope you all have a great weekend! πŸ™‚

What Came First?

I was looking through the new Country Living magazine this morning and came across this sculpture by UK artist Kyle Bean.

093d8fd34241f3dddfb998c9f74d7024.560.0.0.0.90Sculpture made from egg shells by Kyle Bean

How clever is that?Β  I just had to share it with all of you chicken lovers out there…

Speaking of chickens mine are doing fine now. No more drama… I still have one Marans rooster, Darcy, and 6 Marans hens and 2 easter eggers, and I get about 3-4 Marans eggs a day.

The easter eggers have not laid an egg for 6 months. They look nice and healthy, but I wonder if they are finished laying? I don’t think they are that old.

Anyway, I need to buy some more hens…just haven’t found the right ones yet.

Lemon Juice in the Morning…

We are so blessed to have these gorgeous fruits available full of Vitamin C…

citrus

Thelma in her fabulous West Coast Garden is growing lemons and limes. I haven’t been brave enough to do that yet, but maybe this year I’ll give it a try. πŸ™‚

Did you know that there are tons of health benefits from drinking lemon juice first thing in the morning.

Our blogger friend puppiesinparadise wrote a post recently giving 20 reasons to drink the juice of half a lemon in a cup of water in the morning.

Here’s another great article on Food Matters about the benefits of drinking warm lemon water.

Off and on for the last 30 years I have taken half a lemon in water in the morning, but with some recent health issues with my teeth and gums, I’ve been getting more serious about making sure I do this every morning.

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And don’t forget to include some yummy oranges and grapefruits and limes in your day. πŸ™‚

We had some ice and snow last night…first time since November… The cardinals are enjoying their breakfast this morning, while I’m eating mine…

 

cardinals

I’ve already ordered my seeds from The Natural Gardening Company. Remember I won a $100 gift certificate from them for growing the first ripe Oxheart Tomato last year. So I have a good head start on my garden this year, already been planting in the greenhouse and preparing the garden beds. Are you all ready for spring???