I think you all know about my frustrations with rabbits. Yes, they are fuzzy and soft and adorable. . . and I hate them with all of my heart and soul. Ok, maybe thats a bit too strong. They are cute and so softbut they are SOOOO destructive! And they always seem to know which plants I love the most, and kill those first.
Theyve completely stripped the bark off roses, burning bushes, and cotoneasters in our yard. Ive almost given up on Blue Butterfly Delphinium, my favorite flower in the world, because apparently they are quite the delicacy to rabbits. Weve resorted to surrounding our burning bushes in the front yard with chicken wire in the winter (which is SO attractive), because otherwise the rabbits just chew them right down to the ground.
We do have our methods of ridding our yard of rabbits, which involves a couple of live traps and I wont go into the rest here. But we typically, shall we say, relocate between 6 and 12 rabbits every summer. (And dont even get Trevor started on the striped gophersthey make holes in his lawn and are the bane of his existence.)
But squirrels. . . weve never had a problem with squirrels. I dont know why that is, and
I know a few people that feel the same way about squirrels that I do about rabbits (hi, Wilbur!), but we just havent had many squirrels. Maybe its because our neighborhood is new-ish and there arent a lot of really big trees. . . ? I dont knowit seems like there are plenty of trees around for possible squirrel domiciles. But theyve never been an issue for us.
Then, last summer, I brought my office Christmas cactus home to spend the summer in the shady portion of the yard with my other houseplants. (Ive found that they seem to do a lot better over the winter if theyve had a summer out in the yard.) I put it on the ground by our Adirondack two-seater. And something started munching it. I admit it, I just assumed it was a rabbit (or rabbits). By the end of the summer it looked pretty pathetic, and over the winter, back at the office, it didnt improve much. So this past spring, I decided to bring it home again for the summer, but get it up off the ground, away from the nibbling bunnies.
Here is the way it looks now (as of last night):
Its got to be squirrels, because, as nefarious as the rabbits are, Ive never seen them actually climbing up on the furniture. And I know we do have a squirrel or two, because I see them eating under the bird feeders once in a while.
I did notice that the one branch left on my Christmas cactus does actually seem to have a flower bud. . . I think thats pretty hilarious.
But apparently next summer there will be another species of varmint to relocate. Let the games begin!