Gardening Pests and Diseases forum: Gophers

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Imagezuzu
Mar 20, 2010 10:36 PM CST
Name: Zuzu
Northern California
zone 9
Okay, this will surprise everyone who's heard me complain bitterly about gophers for years, but they actually did something wonderful for me this week.

I had an Acanthus I couldn't manage to kill. I know Acanthus is a wonderful plant, even a desirable plant, but it was driving me nuts because it always needed more water than I could possibly spare. Half an hour after watering, it would look thirsty and start drooping. I dug it up, but the problem with Acanthus is that you have to dig a mile around it to get all of the little pieces of root. I had Acanthus coming up all around where I'd dug up the original one, not to mention in the original spot, where it was growing by leaps and bounds.

A few days ago, it looked thirsty as always. I ignored it because we'd just had days of rain and I didn't want to look insane, watering my garden when all my neighbors were feeling waterlogged. As the day progressed, it looked thirstier and thirstier, and in the evening, instead of perking up, it was drooping even more. I walked over and pulled at one of the leaves. The whole thing came out and there was nothing but a gnawed nub at the bottom.

For the past three years I've been planting everything I like in gopher-proof cages. I guess the gophers are desperate enough now to eat anything that's not in a cage. I can only hope they'll move on to the Arum, Ivy, St. John's Wort, and Blackberry vines I'm always trying to kill without much success.
Imagewcgypsy
Mar 22, 2010 10:43 PM CST
Name: Sherry
Crescent City, Ca.
Oh! I could get so much more accomplished if it weren't for making the wire baskets first for everything to be planted! If I were starting over all those long years ago on this property and the previous one next door and I knew how many wire baskets I'd be making over 20-some years....I'd probably quit before I even got started. It would be too overwhelming to think about. And while sitting there making baskets I'm thinking of how quick and satisfying it would be to just go over and plant it....period. I'm happy to say that our neighbor's owls seem to have made a definite dent in the gopher population....
Imagezuzu
Mar 22, 2010 10:46 PM CST
Name: Zuzu
Northern California
zone 9
I found a guy who makes the baskets for me: $2.50 for the 5-gallon and $1.75 for the 1-gallon. He always throws in a few extra for free because I order them 100 at a time.
Imagewcgypsy
Mar 22, 2010 11:06 PM CST
Name: Sherry
Crescent City, Ca.
If I were not retired now with more time than cash, I'd track him down.....sooo tempting.
Imagezuzu
Mar 29, 2010 6:10 PM CST
Name: Zuzu
Northern California
zone 9
He told me he sells at least a thousand a week to gardeners in Santa Cruz. Apparently, the rest of us are living in a gopher-free paradise in comparison with the Santa Cruz area, where the gophers eat literally everything you plant.
Imagewcgypsy
Mar 29, 2010 7:15 PM CST
Name: Sherry
Crescent City, Ca.
This week we've cleared out a pretty good size area for my as-yet-to-be-planted stuff that wants part shade...looks like I have to make 30-some baskets tomorrow...sigh. I'm not going to count past that just yet. On the other hand, I am thrilled to be making some headway in getting more things into the ground. I will buy no more plants, I will buy no more plants, I wil buy no more plants. I must be absolutely certifiable......
Landperson
Aug 27, 2010 11:21 AM CST
Zazu: can you post a link to the gopher basket supplier? I bought 2' and 3' gopher wire and started making some, but it would be good to have a back-up source. Cutting that gopher wire is hard on the hands....

This year the gophers here in Santa Rosa hit critical mass. This morning I had to dig up what was left of my rose JacTan and put it in intensive care. Happy Climbing had a similar fate last week. Now I'm digging most everything up and putting at least a scrap into a pot so that I have back-ups in case I miss their depradations. Of course with 200 roses, it's unlikely I can stay ahead of them.

So far the Black Hole traps are the the best thing I've found.
http://www.mainesupply.biz/blgomoandrat.html
or rather it's the only thing that has ever proven to me that I have eradicated at least one gopher....
Imagezuzu
Aug 27, 2010 2:38 PM CST
Name: Zuzu
Northern California
zone 9
I don't think he has a Website, Susan. I'm reluctant to post phone numbers in a public forum, so I'll send you a c-mail with his name and number.
Landperson
Aug 27, 2010 2:58 PM CST
zuzu wrote:I don't think he has a Website, Susan. I'm reluctant to post phone numbers in a public forum, so I'll send you a c-mail with his name and number.


Absolutely agreed, and absolutely thank you.
I'm about to order two more black hole (not black box) gopher traps....

Susan

ImageCalif_Sue
Sep 6, 2010 6:29 PM CST
Name: Sue
Sebastopol, CA.
Zone 9a
This was just posted in the Sedum/Sempervivun Cubit, if I wasn't moving, I would have tried it in my pots, the squirrels have been super bust burying walnuts in several pots.
http://cubits.org/sedumandsempervivum/thread/view_post/39384...

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