Saturday, July 30, 2016

They Have To Eat, Too

This is just a nice volunteer sunflower.  Nothing to do with the post, really.
Last night while sitting eating my 'lunch' at what I've come to regard as my night and day job, I was thinking about what to plant as my fall crop this year.  I don't have a lot of luck with fall crops.  Either I plant too late or it gets too dry or the frost comes too soon or not soon enough.  But I was reading about growing carrots as a fall crop, so I decided to give that go.  I haven't tried that yet.  As a bonus, I happen to have leftover carrot seeds.
So, I'm out in my garden in back of my house digging up what is left of the carrots I planted last spring. I planted a rather long variety and I've pulled a few that were well over 10 inches long. They are some very nice carrots. I had to literally dig some of them out of the ground lest they break off and cause the prolific swearing and subsequent stabbing of the earth with my little garden trowel in frustration.

What can I say?  The sweat was in my eyes.

So I get the last carrot pulled finally!  I'm sitting on the edge of the bed breaking off the carrot greens and dropping them on the bed for mulch when some movement catches the corner of my eye. I look more closely. To my surprise, and horror, here is a baby bunny digging its way up out of the soil.


Right where I was digging mere moments before. Right where I could have ended his hippity-hoppity life with my little garden trowel.

Double gulp.

I decided to poke around a little, with my hands this time, because you KNOW baby bunnies don't come in singles.  I promptly unearth three more.*

That's when I threw up in my mouth a little and eased the wanderer back into the nest with his siblings before I could find any more or any potential carnage.

Now I know what you're thinking. Why am I not freaking out about a cottontail nest in the middle of my carrot patch?

It's the irony. It seems so appropriate to find rabbits in a carrot patch that I can't complain at all. After all, who of my generation can forget the Saturday morning images of Bugs Bunny tunneling under a carrot farm and popping up in a carotene-induced stupor wondering if he should have turned left at Albuquerque?
I expect Momma Cottontail will move those babes lickety split in the night once she realizes they've been found.**

Unlike some gardeners, I don't mind sharing some of my bounty with the wildlife. I don't like that the birds ate so many of my apples. But in a few years, I'll have more apples than I know what to do with.  It's part of the web of life. Besides, they don't understand our arbitrary boundaries.

Not to mention the fact that they have to eat, too. 

*I took my husband out to view the tiny dinkers and we found a fifth bunny.  All carrot replanting operations are on hold for the moment.

**Update 31 July 2016:  Nope.  They're still there.  And we have a wicked rain storm approaching.  Why am I worried about them?  Yes.  I covered them up with some discarded carrot tops.  Hopeless.  I am hopeless.

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