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Those Darn Rabbits! Are my shrubs goners?

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Those Darn Rabbits! Are my shrubs goners?

Postby HeelsDown » Apr 18, 2013 2:54 pm

First...hello everyone! Spring is around the corner and the snow finally melted away so time to start thinking garden for me!

This year was an actual winter! We had about 3 feet of snow on our lawn at the deepest and a recent ice storm to make things more interesting! However...imagine my shock when the snow receded and revealed what happened to my shrubs! The winter before (our first in this house), we didn't have any snow cover so bunneh's never even crossed my mind. This year though, they obviously couldn't find enough to eat and/or just really enjoyed my Sandcherry, Burning Bush, Weigela, and Snowberry.

I'm hoping y'all can help me figure out if they are salvagable and, if so, what I might need to do to make them so. Trim them back? Leave them? Fertilize them? Pull them out and start over?? The Sandcherry was planted last summer so not yet a year old. The Burning Bush (dwarf variety) and Snowberry were planted in summer of 2011 so are a bit older and the Weigela was there when we moved in although we did move it about a foot over from where it is now. The Burning Bush shrubs are very de-barked, but looks like the others were just eaten down from their original heights.

I thought maybe I should cover them now (if there is any chance that they will come back) so the bunneh's don't help themselves to the new growth...

Help! What do I do?
Clearly, buy chicken wire for next winter is on the list!

Thanks everyone!
Jenn

Here are pictures:
https://picasaweb.google.com/schmenn/Ga ... directlink
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Re: Those Darn Rabbits! Are my shrubs goners?

Postby lilybulb » Apr 20, 2013 9:15 am

I have a burning bush and purple sandcherry that the rabbits got 2 years.I was going to pull them but decided to wait.I think it is too early to get rid of them.Anyway once the weather regulated,they showed new growth so I just cut them back to just above that point.Now I see it has happened again,so I am watching to see what they will do.Not much help but until it gets warm to stay,nothing much you can do.Hope they come back for you.
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Re: Those Darn Rabbits! Are my shrubs goners?

Postby Countryboy » Apr 20, 2013 11:51 am

lilybulb wrote:I think it is too early to get rid of them.


Yup... I think so too. Not to mention that 'waiting' is a fairly easy gardening chore! :)
Adopt the pace of nature, her secret is patience.
.....Ralph Waldo Emmerson....

Frank . . ON5a
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Re: Those Darn Rabbits! Are my shrubs goners?

Postby HeelsDown » Apr 22, 2013 1:35 pm

Waiting is also a cheap form of gardening...down with that!

The weigela is fine I think. I broke off a piece yesterday, and it showed green inside. So, phew on that front. Will wait a bit longer on the others and see...with the snow and below freezing temps we got on Saturday, I wonder if it is ever going to be warm. Ugh!

Thanks guys!
Jenn
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Re: Those Darn Rabbits! Are my shrubs goners?

Postby lilybulb » Apr 23, 2013 9:41 am

I have a few that I will wait until the end of May,and if they aren't coming along well I will replace them.I do think that my burning bush is toast though.Time to start protecting these better.
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Re: Those Darn Rabbits! Are my shrubs goners?

Postby HeelsDown » May 06, 2013 3:52 pm

lilybulb wrote:I have a few that I will wait until the end of May,and if they aren't coming along well I will replace them.I do think that my burning bush is toast though.Time to start protecting these better.


Sigh. I hear that. Now that we've had a bit of warmer weather, I took a closer look today at lunch. I think the weigela and sand cherry will be fine. They may take the entire year to get as high as they were and won't bloom this year, but I do see small leaves on those branches and I snipped off each branch a teeny bit to try and help them grow. Maybe right, maybe wrong, but figured what could it hurt now?

The burning bush have tiny leaves at the base of each one, but I see nothing happening with the actual main stems. I snipped them too and talk about hardwood. I may pull them and start over just to get the size back. The way they were thoroughly de-barked makes me think they will have a very long road back. Which makes me sad, b/c last fall was the first year they turned colour.

I'm investing in solid wire cages for all of them next year!

Jenn
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Re: Those Darn Rabbits! Are my shrubs goners?

Postby HeelsDown » May 22, 2013 11:04 pm

Yay! With some nice weather and lots of rain this week, my shrubs are all alive!! A lot shorter than they would have been had they not been dinner, but alive!

Now just to have patience to let them grow back lol!

Whew! Next year, rabbit proof them. :)

Jenn
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Re: Those Darn Rabbits! Are my shrubs goners?

Postby lilybulb » May 23, 2013 9:22 am

Mine all survived too.Sending out new shoots,and lots of them.It is amazing what shrubs will do after being eaten to the ground by animals.Same here,got to protect them in winter.
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