Sunday, October 31, 2010

A good lawn gone bad....

Our 3rd battle with nature involves the moles and Japanese Beetles (not to be confused with the Asian Beetles). My husband is a bit of a fanatic about his lawn. If it were up to me, I would turn all of the grass in our yard into a natural prairie filled with native plants. Grass only attracts starlings. I have to admit I would probably lose my bluebirds, they like the lawn to spot bugs in. Our mole infestation drove my husband crazy (actually it wasn't a drive, it was a short putt). My theory was we had a gazillion Japanese beetles which lay eggs in the ground and hatch into larvae. The moles eat the larvae. The first year the Japanese beetles hit our yard they ate everything and were everywhere. I would go out in the morning with a small bucket of soapy water and knock them off of my flowers just to keep some in the garden. It was a losing battle. I suspect the moles came because there were so many larvae in the ground. The second year, we had Japanese beetles but not so many, this year Carl only emptied the traps twice. The traps are a mixed blessing. We don't know if they just capture the ones in the yard or attract more to our yard. The first year he put up the traps, he was emptying them every few days. The moles, on the other hand, have proliferated. We have mounds all over our yard and it's become hard to walk because the ground is so uneven. He bought traps that didn't work, poison that hasn't seemed to work and finally resorted to flooding which did. Of course, you have to be able to get the mole when he's flooded out of his hole. Moles will still dig in frozen ground which gives you an idea just how strong their claws are. You can't flood them in the winter, so this fight will continue. As I sit here on the computer, I see the herd of deer just across the street. When it comes to mowing down gardens, the deer are the biggest culprits, followed by the rabbits. The moles are low on the list, they don't usually damage the garden, preferring the lawn to hunt in. I think I'm going to have to change my approach to gardening in order to accommodate all the pests. The alternative is to have a heart attack fighting them all. It's been hard to realize that I don't live in the city where my garden was lush and safe, I live in the country where it's being attacked from all sides.

1 comment:

  1. How do you know Carl was "crazy"? Was he dressed like June Cleaver, dancing by himself in the living room?!?