Tuesday, August 10, 2010

of moles and voles

A mole is a mouse-like creature that burrows underground, insect eating nuisance that takes only one to make a mess in yards. It has shovel-like claws close to the head to dig its way around and loves grubs, the next generation of the Japanese beetle. UGH!

Seems like there's several ways to get rid of these critters. IF you're fast enough, brave enough and watchful enough, you can catch 'em on their burrowing job with a SHARP shovel in your hand, pound down as HARD as you can and murder 'em doing the damage. Yes, I did that once and yes, it's rather gruesome but such a satisfied feeling! :) The moles that are here must have been here since the beginning of time with very deep tunnels as I have never caught any movement, just the nasty results.

It's the grubs that really attract moles, so getting rid of grubs is the key. And flowers and grubs go together like pie and ice cream! I'm pleased to be able to tell you from experience about Milky Spore. Milky Spore is a natural dry powder that attacks the grub and can be safely used on grass. It's expensive - approximately eighty dollars per container (I used two) - needs to be applied with moisture...I did mine during light rains...two consecutive years and in a drought will lose its effectiveness but...will do its job for twenty years otherwise.  Glory! I applied mine four years ago only in the back yard but not in the flower beds (duh!) and the moles do not make trails where it was applied. They literally stop burrowing on the edge of the grass. But they sure do love the side yard where it wasn't applied! Like this...
...and much more!
Voles are a type of mouse that live above and below the ground and are much more destructive. They eat the ROOTS and BULBS of a plant. If a plant looks healthy and suddenly dies, it's probably a vole. They can be caught with mouse traps and rat poison - just be careful where these are placed. I'd take a mole over a vole any day!                                                                                                                                               
In the past month, I've found three entrance holes, two in the yard and one by the greenhouse.
They look like this...
This one tried to hide its hole under a plant! :)
Just in time, I read that this either kills them or keeps 'em away...
Juicy Fruit!
 I don't chew gum and I don't even like Juicy Fruit! But for the cause, I chewed two pieces of gum,
stuffed the wad down the holes with a stick and closed it back up.
Sure would be nice if this would do a permanent job of ridding this place of moles!
Considering we don't live near a wooded area, there sure are lots of 'em around here! :(
But...in the end, they're just moles...doing what they were created for! :)

...happy gardening!


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