What is eating our Beets?

Discussion in 'Gardening & Plant Propagation' started by Alex, Aug 23, 2006.

  1. Alex

    Alex Well-Known Member

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    The top 1/4 of most of our Beets are being eaten by something. Our Beets are 1 1/2 to 2" and from the top down on one side 1/4 of each are eaten. There are marks which look like tiny teeth marks in the scooped out areas.

    The rest of the Beet and greens seem unaffected, and the Beets look healthy otherwise.

    We used to have a squirrel in the shed, but haven't seen him this year. What eats Beets anyway?

    What the heck? I asked one of the neighbors -- didn't know. Today we will try to talk to Judy who is a good long-time local gardner -- maybe she knows, unless someone here knows first.

    Thanks in advance.

    Alex
     
  2. MaineFarmMom

    MaineFarmMom Columnist, Feature Writer

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    When my last crop was destroyed last year it was done by meadow voles. They ate a good portion of the beet without touching the greens. Poke around in bunches of grass nearby and I bet you'll find recently emptied and current nests. The nests like a solid bird's nest and will be made of dried grasses.
     

  3. Paquebot

    Paquebot Well-Known Member

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    Voles will do the same or worse damage to sweet potatoes if they have a chance. Friend and I shared two dozen sweet potato plants last year and black garden fabric was used for warmth and weed control. Bad idea! Voles made that their home while safe from the hawks and owls. When we took up the fabric, voles were running everywhere and almost every single tuber had been gnawed on. No fabric cloth this year!

    Martin
     
  4. Barb

    Barb Well-Known Member

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    The gophers liked the red beets but they postively loved the golden beets - sweeter, I guess.

    Get a rat trap. Put some kind of wire cage over it to keep cats & birds out. Peanut butter works. (reminder to self - set that trap again)
     
  5. Tabitha

    Tabitha greenheart

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    my money is on voles, had them eat potaoes, beets and carrots. so I got a cat, she dragged voles in the size of a halfgrown rat. we had no luck at all with traps.
     
  6. Pony

    Pony STILL not Alice Supporter

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    *shudder* Oh, I would have just screeched; first, in sheer horror; next, in pure anger!

    Pony!
     
  7. Alex

    Alex Well-Known Member

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    Thanks to each of you,

    In the words of Alex Trebic, "That's it!"

    We have lots of Voles around. And I dug three hills of Potatoes this morning, three nice Potatoes were eaten 1/4 thru.

    We have bait we have used in the house; house is sealed up pretty well now, but once in a while still get one inside.

    The bait should do the trick.

    And yes at the Potatoes I found a tunnel and a nest in the mulch. We use drip irrigation and no-till-newspaper-manure-8"-mulch through out the garden. I guess this is one of the non-listed problems with this great gardening method.

    Thanks Again! Much Appreciated!

    Alex (Vegetarian who is about to kill Voles -- Oh Well, I am not going to eat them anyway)