Saturday, December 17, 2011

Foliage Follow-up and a bit of a Rant on Rabbits

There is still some foliage to show for Pam's Foliage Follow-up.  I see she posted some pretty leaves, since theirs in Texas are now at their peak.

This is the honeysuckle a neighbor lady gave me when we first moved here.

The painters palette still has leaves, even though they are shriveled.

I'm liking the little bluestem, and the gray headed coneflower foliage.

I am looking forward to all of the prairie smoke geums that I transplanted here and there growing next year.

I'm not remembering now what the name of this annual is, but I'm wondering if it's a perennial in warmer zones, since it is still green so far.

This persicaria is still looking pretty in and under the leaves.

Here's the snapdragon foliage I said I was going to include here.

Here is one of the foods the rabbits seem to be enjoying this time of year, a daylily plant.

The amsonia hubrichtii and liatris plants still look OK, but are losing more and more foliage.

This isn't the best focus on one of the hellebores, but I included it because I am pleased that they are doing OK in my garden, even though they don't get as much water as they would prefer.

I try to garden in a nature friendly way, but am thinking about taking out the deck in our back yard, because we have seen rabbits, mice, and opossums go under there.  We won't be able to any time soon, though, because the yard is not level, and we can't afford to do much right now.  In the past, I did not mind sharing with the rabbits.  I even plant extra romaine lettuce for them, because they seem to really like it.  We lived peacefully together, except they tended to eat pea plants clear to the ground.   Then, they started eating bean plants down the same way.  They also started eating the flowers clear down to the stubs.  I don't mind some chewed leaves, but please, rabbits, let my plants grow!  I don't know why they are causing more damage than they used to.

This area seems to be one of their favorite spots to be.  How do I know?  Look at the photo that's after this one.

Should I be thankful for the fertilizer?

I do seem to be growing some of their favorite plants now, so I hope to get more of the young plants caged this spring, and hope that as they get bigger, they will be able to withstand the feeding of the rabbits.  If you want to share your experiences or advice on dealing with these critters please let me know.  I do realize taking the deck out will not eliminate the problem, but it takes up too much space anyway, and is getting up there in years.  Larry said his dad built it in 3 stages.

As for the mice, our next door neighbor lady thinks feeding the birds attracts mice, and then they go into houses.  Do you have experience with this? 

I had most of this post ready last night, the official foliage follow-up day, but got sidetracked and forgot to finish it.  I hope you all have a great weekend, and if I don't post again this week, a Merry Christmas.

Added 10/17:  I have not gotten any photos of frost yet.  There was still some left around 10 this morning. I was able to go out and take a few photos.  I found some without frost that I decided to include.

I am holding grandson #2, so will label these later.


  1. It's been a while since my last visit but it's good to be back in your quaint piece of earth. Thanks for a look at your garden. Most garden bloggers wouldn't feel comfortable sharing such naked images. Lots of great potential for next year. If you're like me I spend all winter pining for the potential for next season.

  2. Here when it gets real cold mice come around. My neighbor and I now I have a cat. They also help with snakes here. Woods back up to my house side and back. I also use d-con in areas where no person or animal can get to. I wish I had rabbits here - they are so cute but also a nusence. Have a good weekend Sue. I'm loving my new laptop. I haven't masterd the mouse thing yet. I may have to connect a desk mouse. it's weird.

  3. I love the frosts on your greens. Your brown garden looks like ours at the peak of the dry season. Will those still green push through the winter till spring? Your grazers are rabbits and ours are chickens and goats' kids. But they are not wild, they are our pets.

  4. A winter garden has a lot of interest, and I love your pics. It is a phase of life in the plant cycle, just like old age in humans. Some people continually try and put it off while other embrace it. It's all in the perspective. As for your mice, I have had the same problem,as I feed the birds, squirrels, rabbits, etc a lot. I have set up rules for them all to no avail. Best wishes!

  5. I love how the snapdragons just keep going even when it's so cold. Hellebores are tough and I rarely water mine and they still do fine.
    We also have a back deck that attracts mice and the bigger uglier rodents to find shelter under. I had to quit feeding the birds because it was really attracting them. I actually saw them sitting on the feeders at night after trying to figure out what our dog kept going out to look at. We have woods and a school yard nearby so I think they're around here no matter what, but they have managed to get in our crawl space and in our neighbors attic. That was when I drew the line.
    I've started seeing rabbit pellets near our house, as much as I think they are cute I hope they won't venture into our yard.

  6. So many lovely leaves...I do think bird seed draws the mice...We have a mouse in the basement right now...we also have catch and release traps set hoping to re-locate Mr. Mouse..trying to think of mouse as cute...a Cinderella sort of friend...
    Merry Christmas,

  7. I share your scorn for rabbits. If only they weren't so cute! I haven't seen any mice--maybe because I have two cats. Oh, I take that back--I did see some that got trapped in a window well last winter. But not in the house! Your garden has a lot of beauty even as it goes dormant. Merry Christmas!

  8. Your foliage is still looking very nice; my snaps have finally shriveled and look very sad.

    Could you nail lattice around the base of the deck to keep the varmints out? I would hate to loose the deck!

    We have so many cats outside and the one dog that mice don't seem to be an issue inside. I did dump out 10 or so that got into a locked shed where I keep birdseed. I think if I left that door ajar where the cats could get in......

    Something ate my kale to the ground last year. I suspected rabbits. They can walk within a few feet of our dog and he doesn't seem to smell or hear them.

    It is always something in gardening.

  9. Just stopping by to say Merry Christmas to you and yours.

    I am sorry you are having trouble with rabbits and rodents... I feed the birds off of my deck --and we have NO MICE. We do get possums, raccoons, and skunks in the summer--and we have chipmunks and skads of squirrels... BUT--we'd have all of these critters even if I didn't feed the birds. ha

  10. I really think you should adopt a cat. A cat that's been rescued from somewhere and who has had to forage for food. One that's young enough to still hunt. All that said because some cats will just look at a mouse and then go back to sleep. I prefer female cats because the males tend to spray to mark their territory and I don't like the smell. I suspect shelter and food at your place has caused your bunny population to grow. A cat will take care of the smaller bunnies as well.

    I always enjoy being let into your yard, and I hope you and your family have a good Christmas and that this winter doesn't bring any freaky weather to you. Hugs, Ilene

  11. Your frost pictures are beautiful - the frost is so fleeting and it's hard to capture - well done.

    Our bird feeder is about 6' away from the house and so far we've had no problem with mice. But we do have a cat, so that's probably keeping them away. Although if there are mice around, she's always bringing me gifts of them by the back door. And that hasn't happened in this new house.

    Stop by my blog for a chance to win a Cobrahead weeder!

  12. Just found your blog...
    Once we noticed a wild rabbit in our garden, chased away by our cat and never returned:)
    Mice?? Again, our cat takes care of the little critters. But the squirrel and raccoon populations give me some problems in our neighbourhood.
    Cheers from Canada,
    Merry Christmas and Happy New Year,

  13. Merry Christmas Sue! I hope it is filled with joy and comfort! Grrrr! Rabbits!! Love your snowy scene. We have no snow here yet . . . we had a bunch in October though! Best Wishes for the Holiday! Peace/Carol

  14. Hope you had a wonderful Christmas, Sue. All the best for 2012!



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