Thursday, July 14, 2011
Something's buggin me
I do not use pesticides in my garden. Period. Close paragraph.
Because of my complete avoidance of pesticides my garden is full of life. Bees, ants, beetles and the birds that eat them.
Usually my garden gets into a balance. I have a little insect damage to some plants but I can live with that if it means I get all of the other insects and birds that bring movement and activity to my garden.
This year I'm having more than normal damage to my plants. And it's not on the expected ones. My hostas have little damage (and they are like crack to the deer, rabbits and slugs!).
My Echinacea purpura is loosing it's petals to something. Not the leaves. Just the petals. I found this little inchworm on one of the blooms. The culprit?
One of my Heucheras (coral bells, this one is called Stoplight) has major insect damage. The others right next to it? Not so much.
This one is weird. Tricolor sage. Usually herbs are left alone by most herbivores and insects. The strong flavors and smells are part of their defenses. But this one is just being eaten alive. Insects or the new batch of baby bunnies I've been spotting? (yes, even at four inches they can be on their own. And it doesn't take much to hide them - they're hiding under my perennials!)
And this one - Aster (Symphotrichium?) October skies. Eaten to the stem. Another plant with aromatic foliage.
I'm not even considering a pesticide but I'm hopeful that they'll survive the summer onslaught and return next year, bigger and stronger. And maybe the rabbits will nest somewhere else so my yard isn't filled with cute little eating machines.
[Sorry no pictures of the baby bunnies - they flee if they even think I'm reaching for a camera. Try here for an example of what they look like. Could you turn this little guy out of your garden? I don't think so!]