You’ve seen already that the resident rabbits are my Opponent #1, although I think – I think – I may have found a way to keep their furry little asses from stealing my peppers. But this year I am preparing for battle with Opponent #2: The Squash Vine Borers. This is the damage these guys can do to squash plants, in just a few weeks:
These guys are nasty, ruthless little creatures that burrow into the base of squash plants and wedge themselves into the stems, slowly killing the plants by blocking all of the nutrients from getting to the veggies. Last year I didn’t discover what they were until it was too late – my zucchini season was cut short by these fat boys camping out inside the plants. They are like middle school bullies stealing lunch money from my zucchini, and I will not have it this year.
When fat boys are done gnawing through the plants, they exit and burrow into the soil where they “pupate” – only to re-emerge the following Spring as an ugly-wasp like creature that will lay more eggs at the base of more squash plants and do it all over again. (For more info on last year’s fiasco, see my post on Endless Simmer.)
This year, no one is pupating in my garden without getting past me first. That’s right – I am beefing up security, and suiting my plants up in some serious armor. And how, might you ask, will I do that? I am dressing them in panty hose.
Yep. My plants are comfortable enough with their sexuality that they don’t have a problem pulling on some stockings, especially if it is said to keep those pesky vine borers from burrowing their way in. Fingers crossed that this works – only time will tell.