No it is not slugs! Over the past couple of weeks I have twice planted out my veg - mangetoute, green beans, broccoli, brussel sprouts and peas and both times over a couple of days they have completely disappeared leaving just small hole where they had been. I have ruled out badger as veg plot is fenced off, maybe the pine martens but there are no foot prints, so that leaves birds, mice or bank voles. Just seems staggering that something small could carry off such large quantities. Any ideas, before I go out and plant a third lot?
it sounds like mice, you could try small holed chicken wire cut in long strips and shaped into v shapes and then pegged down, whether it is possible to buy these clotches anywhere close to you is another question and also would be these be adequate is another. But possible the only sure way is to grow them inside a glass house.
Birds usually just pull stuff out of the ground but don't eat it so it must be rodents. Sounds like plastic bottles work fine and would probably bring seedlings on quicker too. A cold frame (with some sort of base) would do a similar job. I don't grow veg these days - I was never very successful - but I wish the birds wouldn't pull out small bulbs and leave them to dry out on the surface.
The plastic bottles sound fine, but I would need a lot of bottles and more than likely the heavy wind here would blow them away. It is wood mice I have and they seem to be able to get through the smallest of gaps - think they can almost flatten themselves. think I may have to end up getting a polly tunnel. I don't suppose there is anything I could put on the ground to deter them?
Helen I had a word with my brother and he tells me he always uses wire cloches just has I described earlier, you may have to double and overlap the wire so the hole size is reduced. Plastic and polly tunnels sound ok in theory but mice can and do chew holes in these.
You could also try these humane traps but then again my brother tells me that wire cloches pegged down tight to the ground work very well.
PS My brother still gardens in the old fashion way which these days as become known as organic!But from what I can see it is also a labour of love and “very hard work” too but then again any surplus left over is ours for free so who am I to complain.
Thanks Alan. I like the idea of the mesh - I think you can get very close fit mesh which I could double up and which I will try. As a bye the bye I did try using humane traps, but got too distressed finding one with a broken back and one with it's tail cut off. I won't use anything that will kill them not even the eradimouse as along with the wood mice, I have bank voles, and pine martens. Looking on the bright side, at least I am feeding the wildlife:)