Gardening

Muncha! Muncha! Muncha!

I imagine this is the sound of rabbits eating my garden.
All through the month of June my son has been choosing one book more often than any other: “Muncha! Muncha! Muncha!.” It is possible he is trying to persuade me that my struggle with the bunnies, who are devouring my peas and carrots, is futile – and until I “get” the message inside this book, I’m going to be asked to read it again, and again?

It’s also possible that as I read, I give extra emphasis and drama to the words spoken by poor Mr. McGreely.¬† I can certainly relate. As McGreely endeavors to regain control of his garden,¬†confident and hopeful McGreely is out-witted by three tiny bunnies. With each new barrier; two fences, a trench, and a high brick wall, Mr. McGreely’s self-congratulatory phrases become more amusing. Each time the bunnies thwart his efforts, and pause for giggles.

As the wooden wall goes up, Mr McGreely boasts:
“Those flop-ears will never get over it….
no bunny can get into my garden now!”

Grins and giggles all around as I turn the page; we know, as
“The sun went down. And the moon came up…”
The bunnies were not deterred.

I like this book as a read-to-self book for very early readers. Kids build reading confidence, as nearly every page has repeating phrases and rhymes. I hope your children enjoy it as much as mine.

Muncha! Muncha! Muncha! by Candace Fleming and G.Brian Karas

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It’s too soon to know whether there is time for the peas and carrots to recover from the bunny incident. But our back door salad greens have been wonderful.
We’ve been picking the spinach and lettuce leaves as needed, leaving the plants intact. Although, there came a time when some of the plants were spent and/or producing seed. Those plants were removed to make space for new seeds to go into the soil. Leaving some mature plants provided shade for the new greens, which would have suffered in the strong sun and heat of June. It’s been a near perfect system. Of course without the 16oz jar of cayenne pepper, most assuredly the rabbits would have had ALL our greens.

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“Having finished off the young carrots, he set to work on the peas.” So begins my story of sadness and horror.

Not long after undertaking the disturbing task of “thinning” the carrot row, I found all the carrot plants were gone. (“disturbing,” because the task is nothing more than deciding which plants will live and which will die)

Seems a four inch high carrot plant is a treat for hungry bunnies. Also I can assume that a three inch carrot plant is unappetizing or not worth the effort.
I had set in place a small wire garden fence. It was meant as a deterrent really; the gaps between the wires were kind of large.

It’s early June, a little late to sow carrots. But I’m going to try. I have a jar of cayenne pepper that I suspect will be more effective than my little fence. Yep, I’m a meanie. But I didn’t start out this way; I was willing to share with the little flop ears. But the bunnies ate more then their share.

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