Falling leaves and critters ?

NHRed(z5 NewEngland)October 31, 2005

This is my first year with a Japanese Garden. It is a small courtyard style with lots of moss and peastone. I realize that falling leaves are a fact of life here - but I have a big silver birch growing in the middle which is shedding little catkin scales and tiny bits of bark and wood all over the stone and moss. This is impossible to rake up, so how do you deal with it? I tried using a vacuum, being careful not to suck up any moss with limited success. It looks like I will have to screen and wash the stone in the spring. Does any one use a leaf blower?

My second problem is that the critters all love this place which is fine becqause they are cute little buggers and part of nature, but now they are doing what comes natuarly at this time of the year - which is burying seeds for the winter which absolutely is causing havoc with the moss. They are tearing the bejezzis out of it and throwing dirt all over the place. The other critters are moles, which I never see, but they are tunneling under the fabric under the stone leaving these bubbles everywhere. Occassionally they will surface at the edges and leave a mess. Does anyone have any techniques for controling or repelling these guys? I will most likely wait until spring for major repair of the moss.

Thanks

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gardenberry(z5 IL)

You could try putting netting down over the moss - most animals don't like to walk on it and it will discourage digging.

We use blowers on a low setting to blow debris to the edge, then sweep it with a whisk broom to get the rest.

Good luck with the moles, I have nothing else to offer you.

GardenBerry

    Bookmark   October 31, 2005 at 12:31PM
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Herb

We used to discourage moles by dropping calcium carbide pellets into the borrows. You may not be able to get calcium carbide these days & animal rights wierdos might object to because when it gets damp, it gives off acetylene gas.

    Bookmark   October 31, 2005 at 4:12PM
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