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Asparagus thief!

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Asparagus thief!

Postby Heidi S » Jun 09, 2012 3:02 pm

Someone, or something is nibbling off the new shoots (but just the nice fat ones) as they emerge from the ground. No foot prints to be seen, but it could be a squirrel, some unknown rodent, or my dear dog (who has a history with my asparagus patch). I had already fenced them off to keep Miss Molly out, the first year we had her, and I don't see her foot prints, so I don't think she is hopping that fence, but I am definitely NOT getting any of my shoots!

Damn, they are my favourite and I wait every year to get them! So I have added more netting 1/2 in squares to the existing fencing, over the top and around the sides in an attempt to foil the thief - I want my asparagus!!!!!
Heidi S,
Prince George, BC
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Re: Asparagus thief!

Postby Eeyore » Jun 09, 2012 6:40 pm

I hope you get it too Heidi!
Lyn
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Re: Asparagus thief!

Postby Mervyn » Jun 10, 2012 12:06 am

Why not just cover them with a terracotta pot ? it will keep away most animals and will blanche them as well.
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Re: Asparagus thief!

Postby Heidi S » Jun 10, 2012 3:02 am

Well, I prefer green asparagus to white, but I also don't know where the tips are going to come up to cover, until the thief has already been in to chew it off - literally it is taking the tip off as it pokes up from the soil, not after it has come up and is visible for a while.

Very frustrating!
Heidi S,
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Re: Asparagus thief!

Postby davefrombc » Jun 10, 2012 10:20 am

Sounds like slugs at work to me
BC Fraser Valley zone 7/8
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Re: Asparagus thief!

Postby Heidi S » Jun 10, 2012 10:29 am

Dave, I haven't seen any this year, but that could be it! I will have to get out some slug bait.... Where did I put that stuff. Our slugs are tiny things up here in the cold zone of BC, nothing like the coastal behemoths I grew up with. So they are much harder to find. That bed has no hiding area a there is no foliage cover, but I will have to take a midnight stroll with a flash light.

Thanks for the tip.
Heidi S,
Prince George, BC
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Re: Asparagus thief!

Postby davefrombc » Jun 10, 2012 11:06 am

I lived in Ft. St. James for 26 years (100 miles NW of Prince George). The little #$%*@!!s were more trouble up there than the big banana slugs down here are.
BC Fraser Valley zone 7/8
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Re: Asparagus thief!

Postby Heidi S » Jun 10, 2012 9:26 pm

Ok, Slug bait laid around the asparagus bed! Take that! Leave them alone! Man, the nibbled ones just rot at the soil surface level. I could cry....
Heidi S,
Prince George, BC
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Re: Asparagus thief!

Postby Mervyn » Jun 10, 2012 9:52 pm

Have you tried copper wire around where they are growing ? or just a large amount of copper pennies ? ?
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Re: Asparagus thief!

Postby Heidi S » Jun 20, 2012 12:04 am

Dave, the slug bait has helped - that was the culprit.

Since I have had such predation on my new shoots, I have decided to not cut any this year and allow the patch to rejuvenate itself. Sad, but I think it needs a rest after all the slug damage. I will be watching for them closely from now on.

Meanwhile, the forest tent caterpillars are consuming the world around here! Nasty things...
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Prince George, BC
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