Tuesday, June 24, 2003

Strike, Counter-Strike

While I was at work this weekend, the rest of the family decided it was time to wage war on the ground hogs. Ever since the neighbor's German short hair pointer passed away, the ground hogs have have slowly accumulating territory, creeping ever closer to the flower beds and ultimately taking up residence inside the back vegetable garden, which has been fallow for a year. Well not anymore. With the amount of corn, beans and squash we're planting this year, we needed the back garden again.

But first the hogs had to go. Mom found one lumbering along the driveway that was larger than a good sized Beagle, which was pretty disconcerting. So my little brother suggested an old technique his boss has taught him down at the lawn and garden store:

Take one gallon gasoline, mix with four gallons water.
Pour down groundhog hole.
Light Match
Drop very very carefully down hole.
Run like your pants are on fire... so your pants don't catch on fire.

The hole was blown up, or imploded actually, which some amazing pyrontechnic affects, and some almost-singed eyebrows. Judging by the hawk hanging around yesterday, something must have been inside it at the time of the attack, but like Iraq, the rebuilding of the garden has just begun. The ground hogs or their friends the rabbits appeared to have counterattacked last night, eating all of our beautiful new sweet pea plants before they even started climbing the fence. We've added some reinforced chicken wire to the upper garden, but we may resort to a stake out with a pellet gun if the sabotage doesn't abate.

To do my part in protecting the plants, I made Scarecrows for both the front and back garden. The scarecrow out front is outfitted in green denim jeans and an ancient guess jean shirt of mine from middle school. Both straw-hands hold big aluminium pie saucers which bang in the wind, and on the pantyhose head there's a bat man baseball cap and some more pie pans. I think she looks pretty much like i do when i'm out in the garden, though i have a big straw hat on, not a baseball cap. The two scarecrows in back aren't half as cool, just a broom corn dowel tied to a bamboo rod and with a pie pan and multiple bird scare streamers. I'm hoping these clanging monsters will keep the birds and the critters out of the garden, at least until the fam gets back from the wedding.


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