I don’t mind wildlife sharing this little piece of earth I occupy, and I believe we can cohabit reasonably amicably. However there is, currently, at least one roommate, or frequent visitor, making a real mess of the garden, forcing me to establish boundaries.
I am thinking it is skunks who have completely wrecked havoc with my onion crop for the third year in a row, tearing them out of the earth before they are ready and randomly biting the bulbs before strewing them about.
This morning I collected just about all the onions from the surface. It really looked like wanton vandalism. Skunky punks! Most onion bulbs have only a minor nibble - as if the marauding critter took one bite out of each then moved on.
In spring of this year, I planted a pound of yellow and a pound of red onion sets. Most of those vandalized have not yet swelled to a good size. I have been harvesting on an as needed basis straight from garden to cooking pot. Looking at today’s sorry onion massacre, I’m thinking, with some deft slicing and dicing I might salvage some small amount of onion for dehydration to use as onion powder. This onion reclamation labour is so not what I was planning to do with my Monday.
In the 5am twilight this morning, I came face to face with a beautiful sleek skunk at the back door. I decided to do my morning yoga stretching and pranayama practice while the tea kettle boils, inside.
Later, in full daylight, it was discovered that the newly transplanted Hemerocallis and Iris germanica area outback has been thoroughly done over by a digging creature. The math adds up to skunk.
Enough already! Either I’m done with onion cultivation or I invest in raised beds, beyond the reach of skunks, for onions.
There is also strong evidence that someone has also been investigating under the house, under my bedroom to be specific, where I know the skunk gastronomic delight of desert tarantulas nest. A snuffling and grunting beneath my bedroom floorboards woke me in the early morning hours, two nights in a row last week. Skunk is prime suspect
After I wedged a stone across what could have been an access hole, the early dawn was perfumed with skunk displeasure. A lot of scratching seemed to have taken place around the rock.
Again the math adds up to skunk.