All gardeners have their crosses to bear, often in the form of the wild creatures with whom we share our acreage. We do what we can to eliminate or exclude them, or we learn how to live with them. Here are a few of the creatures with whom I’ve made some semblance of peace:
I introduce to you my nemesis, Mr. Wood Chuck. No one frustrates me as much as he!
Given the topography of our property, it is no surprise that I feel overrun by these creatures. Heck, if I were a woodchuck (or ground-hog, or whistle pig), I’d look at all of these boulders and think, “Wow, luxury apartments! And how kind of the landlord to plant stuff for us, too!”
In my nine years of gardening in this yard, I’ve had to learn what the woodchucks don’t eat. Here, then, based solely upon my personal experience, is my list of:
Woodchuck Resistant Plants
Annual Flowers: ageratum, alyssum, begonias(wax), cleome, dianthus, dusty miller, geraniums, globe amaranth (gomphrena), lantana, marigolds, nicotiana, portulaca, salvia, vinca
Bulbs: allium, daffodils, hyacinths, muscari (grape hyacinths)
Perennials: anemone, astilbe, basket of gold alyssum, bee balm (monarda), balloon flower, bleeding heart, butterfly bush (Buddleia), candytuft, coreopsis(only threadleaf varieties), clematis, dianthus, geum, foxglove, irises, Jupiter’s beard, lamb’s ears, roses, Russian sage, salvia (May Night), scabiosa (pincushion flower), sedum
Vegetables and Herbs: basil, chives, lavender, mint, oregano, sage, thyme, rosemary, jalapeño peppers, rhubarb, tomatoes
Now, for those of you who insist upon inviting the Chucks over for a dinner party, here is a list of:
Plants Woodchucks Have Devoured in My Garden
Annual Flowers: bachelor’s buttons, cosmos, impatiens, morning glories, pansies, petunias, phlox, stock, sunflowers, sweet potato vine, zinnias
Bulbs: crocuses, gladiolas (they don’t bother the bulbs, but eat the flowers!)
Perennials: coral bells (Heuchera), coreopsis (broadleaf varieties), echinacea (coneflower), hollyhocks, hosta, lupine, rudbeckia, yarrow
Vegetables: bell peppers, broccoli, cucumbers, green beans, lettuce, melon, parsley, peas, pumpkins, spinach, yellow beans, zucchini
PLEASE NOTE! This list is based only on the experience I have had in my own home garden! There are NO guarantees with these wily pests. Woodchucks’ tastes vary, and sometimes, what they rejected last year becomes a favorite this year! For eight years the woodchucks left my hardy chrysanthemums alone. Then one morning I opened the drapes and found that one had been feasted on the night before. It seems to have been a one time feast, but one can never be certain!