Who's That Standing in My Garden?

| 7/18/2012 2:50:57 PM

Tags: organic gardening, wildlife, scarecrows, Cam Mather,

Nature abhors a vacuum.

 I discovered this here at Sunflower Farm many years ago. Three square inches of exposed, unoccupied soil will have weeds sprouting within days and be covered in a week. If we get any rain during a summer fighting them becomes a full time endeavor.

 And so it was that nature stepped in to fill the void shortly after Morgan the Wonder Dog left us. Within two days of Morgan’s death there were deer prints in the garden. If we were just growing food for ourselves this would be an inconvenience. If we were just growing food to sell at a market, this would be an annoyance. But now that we are running a CSA and have committed to grow food for a dozen families, it’s kind of a big deal, in a very bad way.

 Morgan was obviously doing a great job of keeping the wolves (or deer in this case) at bay. During nice weather he preferred to sleep outside and we’d often hear him barking during the night, sometimes a long way from the house. During the hot summer months he slept most of the day and I think it was because he was up most of the night listening for disturbances in the force.

 I am prepared to camp out in the garden if necessary but I’d hoped to not have to do it this early in the season. First off because the bugs are still bad and I’ll need to be in a tent. Secondly because I’m so darn tired. With the summer heat we’ve been experiencing since the spring I’ve been forced to get up early (5 a.m.) so that I can get into the garden to accomplish as much as I can before it’s too hot. And since it stays light until almost 10 pm, I don’t get to sleep any earlier. Spending the day in the garden wears me down and it’s nice to sleep in a bed to try and recover. It’s a small luxury I appreciate.

Our new dog Jasper isn’t quite ready to sleep outside on his own just yet (or at least we aren’t ready to ask him to do so.) So I decided to go to “Plan B” before I dug out my high school-era pup tent. If I can’t be in the garden 24/7, perhaps I could put something out there that looks and smells like me to scare the deer away. I decided to make some scarecrows.

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