The last straw

Saint Louis, MO(Zone 6a)

OK, so I've ranted frequently about doing battle with deer, raccoons, groundhogs (so cute!), but this may be the last straw. I had a perfectly lovely linaria alpina planted in a container on my porch, which was part of my ongoing experiment to see which of the traditionally 'alpine' plants will adapt to Midwestern conditions (answer turns out to be: 'not many'). The linaria alpina was actually doing fine (see pictures below), though not as floriferous as you see in google images in more appropriate settings. But this morning, I found him withered and lying next to the planter. I assumed the usual suspects (squirrels, groundhogs, raccoons, etc). I went to replant him and started to scratch away a clump of soil in the midst of the spot where he used to reside, but the clump of 'soil' wiggled at the touch of my finger - turned out to be a toad! Of course, I was startled to an unmanly degree (my wife, sadly, watched the entire episode). I regained my composure and have replanted my sad little fellow elsewhere, though looks like a goner. The toad never moved and still sits where I found him this morning. I can only assume the toad dislodged the plant in the process of making some sort of nesting hole in my planter. So, is this garden thuggery typical behavior of toads? Or is this guy just a particularly churlish character? He's actually kind of cute - is there any reason I can't just let him stay there? He obviously seems to have made himself completely at home there.

Thumbnail by Weerobin Thumbnail by Weerobin Thumbnail by Weerobin
Hobart, IN

Funny about the toad, not so funny about your alpine. I have found toads in pots before and always wondered "how" and "why". Fortunately, have never had them do any plant editing for me. You can let him sit there and if he needs a warmer spot for winter, I'd assume he'd just jump out of the pot and look for another plant to edit (just kidding about further editing).

Elgin, IL(Zone 5a)

I confess I laughed out loud.

One of my clients has a toad in her yard I have seen several times, but she never has. She kind of freaked out when I told her about it. It looks a lot like yours and is always in the same spot so I warned her off. Generally speaking having a toad is a good thing but not if they don't know how to behave.

My japanese kerria keeps being chomped by I don't know what. Fortunately it suckers. I put hardware cloth around it and used plant clips (those U shaped things?) to attach it to the ground. Maybe that will work for you until your guest decided to depart.

They are a bit gross looking. I've had frogs and they are nice enough to be highly visible. And it's no reflection on your manhood. At least you didn't scream! And bravo for wanting to keep him around. It should impress your wife - you are obviously a great guy!

Lake Stevens, WA(Zone 8a)

et tu, Toadus!

Lititz, PA(Zone 6b)

Lol..."startled to an unmanly degree"

That's ok Wee, I probably would have been startled just the same.

Sorry to hear about your alpine plant. It is pretty amazing the amount of protection you need to have and still something trashed your plant.

Saint Louis, MO(Zone 6a)

He's still perched in exactly the same spot as before. I don't know if toads 'nest', but it sure looks like he's nesting.
Donna, I buy the 'landscape anchors' in bulk at a local gardening supply wholesaler.
My yard looks pretty much like a fortress. A little like that movie, Caddyshack (for any of you guys old enough to be familiar with it...)!

Elgin, IL(Zone 5a)

Every time I saw that toad in her yard, it was in exactly the very same place. I felt as though I should introduce myself.

I can picture your toad maneuvering around the fortress - LOL!

Lititz, PA(Zone 6b)

With toads like that, who needs to buy stone ones as a decoration? LOL

Wyoming, MN

Toads are wonderful slug eaters.

Elgin, IL(Zone 5a)

Come to think of it, her hostas have no damage!

Lititz, PA(Zone 6b)

There you go....pet toads here we come!

Perham, MN(Zone 3b)

Wee, you need to get him a suitable toad house, which you will inscribe with the name Toad Hall, and a model sports car which you will park near its door. Ultimately it will be far more amusing to your better-read guests than any alpine...

Lake Stevens, WA(Zone 8a)

I like Joan's idea!
I stopped putting out slug bait, because I got worried about the critters that eat them, and I like my toad who lives under the Ceanothus.

Elgin, IL(Zone 5a)

Oh Joan, that's awesome!

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