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Peppers: Critters stealing my bell peppers

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sunkissed

sunkissed
Winter Springs, FL
(Zone 9b)

October 10, 2011
2:25 PM

Post #8843796

Is there a way to keep the critters from taking my bell peppers? Lately just as mine are ready to be picked I go out to pick one and they're gone. I'm sure it is the squirrels, I have a gazillion of them in my trees. I know they will eat holes in my oranges right when they are ripe for the seeds, and they do the same to my tomatoes. But something is taking the whole peppers.

rjogden
Gainesville, FL
(Zone 8b)

October 16, 2011
3:33 PM

Post #8851469

Well, bird enthusiasts add hot pepper powder to their birdseed to discourage squirrels - I'm not sure it works if the squirrels are hungry enough.

-Richard
smokemaster
North Hills, CA

October 16, 2011
7:55 PM

Post #8851800

DON"T spray your plants down with any spray that contains chile powder.

Not that it doesn't work,it does.
Problem is that you'll need a hazmat suit everytime you go in your garden.

When you tend your plants the stuff rubs off on you,your tools and cloths.

Depending on how strong your water/chile powder mix is and how many times you spray can be a hassle.
Watering etc washes the stuff all over the place.

Hot pepper seeds work for keeping the squirell away until they figure out which seeds not to put in their cheeks to stash.
Spray of cayenne works better but then you have the stuff all over the place.

They learn to chew through bird net and dig under chicken wire(even when put 10 or so inches underground.
Live traps catch as many cats and birds as squirrels depending on the bait used.

Best deternt so far is having a dog or cat- dogs or cats around.They at least keep the squirrels on their toes.
A friend didn't want a pet so she found that putting cat food out eventually attracted stray or neighborhood cats and she always had a few hanging out after a while.
They became friendly and she had pets but no litter box or dead mice presents to deal with.
A bag of cat food is cheep insurance.
Put it out at first in the evening when cats are on the prowl.
Other stuff eats it during the day.
Only put a bowl out so they might come in hungry and have to hunt squirrels because the bowl was empty...
It really does work pretty well for my friend and keeps a lot of critters away.
20 lb. of dry cat food lasts a long time.$10.00+/-.


rjogden
Gainesville, FL
(Zone 8b)

October 18, 2011
3:44 PM

Post #8854455

smokemaster wrote:DON"T spray your plants down with any spray that contains chile powder.

Not that it doesn't work,it does.
Problem is that you'll need a hazmat suit everytime you go in your garden.

When you tend your plants the stuff rubs off on you,your tools and cloths.


Weenie... ;o)

smokemaster wrote:A bag of cat food is cheep insurance.
Put it out at first in the evening when cats are on the prowl.
Other stuff eats it during the day.
Only put a bowl out so they might come in hungry and have to hunt squirrels because the bowl was empty...
It really does work pretty well for my friend and keeps a lot of critters away.
20 lb. of dry cat food lasts a long time.$10.00+/-.


That sure wouldn't work here. You'd just end up with armadillos, raccoons and possums. I mean, you'd end up with a lot MORE armadillos, raccoons and possums than usual. Which, after finishing off the cat food, will go after anything else edible, and keep you up at night for good measure.

-Rich


smokemaster
North Hills, CA

October 18, 2011
7:10 PM

Post #8854730

Aw,look at those cute little skunks on the porch eating the cat food...

The lady who does the cat food thing doesn't live in the boonies,a city dweller,
Just a few critters to deal with,Squirels,escaped pets(ginea pigs,hamsters,white rats etc.).
rjogden
Gainesville, FL
(Zone 8b)

October 18, 2011
9:01 PM

Post #8854870

smokemaster wrote:Aw,look at those cute little skunks on the porch eating the cat food.


Oh, yeah, I had "The Skunk Experience" when I lived in Georgia in the country outside Athens. It was a scene straight out of a bad movie - renting an ancient single-wide trailer out in the woods (all I could afford in grad school); no A/C, couldn't even properly seal the windows (you could tell which way the wind was blowing in winter with everything rolled shut). Late at night, middle of the summer, feeling the sweat run down my neck, watching the fuzzy picture on my black-and-white, I hear this yelp from one of my dogs. 5 seconds later the smell comes down the hall and washes over the room like a tsunami breaking on the trailer - I will swear you could SEE it. 5 seconds after THAT the dog is at the door whining like he is being beaten... Yeah, sure, I felt bad - he caught it right in the face, and I cleaned him off as well as I could - but I didn't feel bad enough to let him in to ruin the furniture and what passed for a carpet.

Miss skunks I do NOT!

-Rich


1lisac
Liberty Hill, TX
(Zone 8a)

October 19, 2011
11:33 AM

Post #8855681

Hey, hey, hey-be careful with those out in the boonies remarks- teasing. Yesterday I was told I lived in the sticks : ( . I put out cat food one night this summer, closed the door and heard a strange noise. The cat had turned into a raccoon! The cat just sat there, the only problem is that when there isn't any food the coons get very disructive and aggressive. I have lost many chickens to them. They are not welcome at my house.
Smokemaster- I live in the country but I'm from your area originally
smokemaster
North Hills, CA

October 19, 2011
5:37 PM

Post #8856344

Nothing wrong with living "outside of town".
From the early 70's to mid/late 70's I lived on the South rim of the Grand Canyon (AZ.)then moved to Truckee(Lake Tahoe area-Ca. side just before Reno NV.).
Some of the best times of my life.

South Rim Story- Pepe La Pew and Rintailed Cats(not puddy tats,I taught I taw a Puddy Tat...)

One night I was walking to work and saw a dead skumk in the road.
Farther away was a couple Indians throwing rocks at 3 or 4 baby Skunks.
The skunks took off in all directions but one headed to the rim.
It looked in bad shape,semi dragging one of it's rear legs.
I went inside and signed in for work as usual.
I was a night porter and used to clean up the Snack bar etc. at night.
When I went to clean up the snack bar i saw something run under the snack bar.
While I was mopping up I saw the baby skunk come out.
I felt sorry for the little guy and put some snack bar scraps near the opening.
After a week or so the baby would come out whenever I was putting the food out for it.
Long story short,it decided I was it's friend.
After several months after it grew up and went off somewhere else to live it still came back every night for it's handouts.
It never even raised it's tail at me,never.

I used to like sitting on the rim every morning and watch the sun come up.
I guess Pepe figured it out and I'd be sitting on the rim and he'd show up.Sit down next to me like a dog.
I liked to play my harmonica while i watched the sunrise.
It got so every time nobody was around and Pepe heard the blues Harp he'd come from the bushes somewhere and have a listen and sit next to me.

After a couple years he started waiting on the trail to work for me and follow me to work.
I decided to see what would happen if I walked faster or ran.
He'd follow.
In the winter I used to cut through the Thunderbird and Kachina lodge to go to either the Bright angle or El Tovar Lodges.
I didn't think Pepe would follow me inside.He usually would run around and meet me at the other door.
One time he did follow me inside and I didn't know(doors stay open a little bit after you open them).
I'm sitting with a couple rangers drinking coffee and they get a call about a disturbance in the thunderbird.
Rangers take off but 5 min. latter one comes back laughing his butt off and he wants me to get Pepe out of the TV room of the lodge.
Everyone knew Pepe,he walked different than other skunks ,he had a bad back leg...
I went to the TV room and as soom as Pepe saw me he came running and put down his tail.He let me open the door and let him out.The skunk wisperer?LOL

I guess that gave him his fill of people. He followed me home a couple days latter and moved in under my trailer.
Eventually he found a girlfriend and dissapeared except to come by every so often to say hello.
Last time I saw him he came by to show off his family.
He came with his mate and 4 babies.
Never saw him again after that.
He NEVER sprayed around the trailer which was cool.

Fun with Pepe.
Sometimes at bar closing people would hang out too long in the lobby and I'd have to wait until they left to mop the floor.
I solved the problem by going outside and blowing a few notes on my Blues Harp.
Pepe would soon show up.
I'd prop open the front and rear doors first then run through the lobby yelling "Skunk,Mad Skunk".
Pepe would follow me and pretty soon I could finnish my work and go home.
Gotta make work fun. LOL

We had ringtailed cats that were like Racoons.They liked running around inside getting into anything that was edible.The beams in the open ceiling were their highways.
Very destructive and hard to keep out.
cool looking but nasty critters.

http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Ring-tailed_cat




This message was edited Oct 19, 2011 5:08 PM

This message was edited Oct 19, 2011 5:17 PM

sunkissed

sunkissed
Winter Springs, FL
(Zone 9b)

October 21, 2011
2:00 PM

Post #8858467

Been out of town and just catching up on DG...

I guess I'll try some pepper sprinkled around the base of the plant. I did move the plant (in a container) closer to my porch and human activity...so far it seems to be working. We were gone for a week and my two peppers are still there. They never bother my jalapeņos or chili peppers. I was wondering about wire but sounds like even that won't work with those pesky squirrels.

I have three indoor cats so can't have any strays hanging around.

I did have a dog, a German Shepherd but she passed almost two years ago...she did keep the squirrels on their toes. I would love to get another one just exactly like her...she knew to stay out of my gardens. Her path is still there but slowly plants are starting to cover it up. :(

Smokemaster your Skunk story is really cute. :)

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