Rabbits ate my hostas

natalie4b(7b GA)October 31, 2006

I have planted so many hostas this summer, and most of them have been eaten by rabbits. They think my garden is "all you can eat salad bar". They also eliminated my other plants, but mostly hostas. Any suggestions? Thanks!

Natalie

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Lykaon - Ohio Zone 6a

I bought some Liquid Fence and applied and generous helping to my "salad bar" through most of the summer. Once a month seemed to do the trick. It worked pretty well until late August or early September when I started to get lazy.

There are other products that probably have a similar ingredients. They are mostly advertised as a deer repellent but I think they work for both.

    Bookmark   October 31, 2006 at 9:45PM
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natalie4b(7b GA)

I will give Liquid Fence a try. Everything I used before (human hair, and other remedies) brought no results.
I just noticed they ate the lambs ears I recently planted. Interestingly enough though the leaves were scattered allover the place. Wasn't it yummy enough for their taste?
Thank you lykaon78 for your advice.

-Natalie

    Bookmark   November 3, 2006 at 10:27PM
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maggiemae_2006

I really don't believe that rabbits ate your hosta did you see them eating the hosta. Now, I've seen them bite off a leaf but not eat them. Deer are much more likely even if you don't think you have deer!

    Bookmark   November 4, 2006 at 6:03PM
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larry_in_hamburg

I had hosta damage caused by critters. Could of been deer, rabbits but primary culprit was a ground hog. Liquid Fence seemed to be effective. You can also try a home brew. Three or four raw eggs in a gallon milk jug, fill 3/4 full of water and let sit in sun for a few days. Strain out any solids and spray on and around plants with a spray bottle.
Ground hog was live trapped and relocated. I was then told they are very territorial and if moved far enough away they won't come back but also won't survive. Only sure cure and most humane is to shoot them. Any input on ground hogs?

    Bookmark   November 4, 2006 at 9:01PM
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donrawson(Z 5)

I just checked my notes for ground hogs. It says to put well-used cat litter down their holes. (I know that would make ME relocate!!!) LOL, Don

    Bookmark   November 4, 2006 at 10:11PM
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natalie4b(7b GA)

Maggiemae,

I actually did see them eat the hostas. They seem to eat anything that is on their way: leaves, vegetation.

This year we have lots and lots of chipmunks running around and drilling the ground. Hope they will stay away from the hundreds of spring flowering bulbs I have planted few days ago.

Well, I guess it comes with the territory!

    Bookmark   November 5, 2006 at 1:56PM
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maggiemae_2006

I have watched rabbits chew off a leaf but not actually eat them beyond a chew or two?

Often when I plant a new one I will come back and find a couple of leaves removed, that is all that happens.

    Bookmark   November 5, 2006 at 2:18PM
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jel48(Z4 Michigan)

In my experience, rabbits eat everything. Well, maybe not everything, but very near. I hate it, but fencing is about the only way I can protect my hostas, other perennials, and even young shrubs. We do have a very heavy rabbit population though.

    Bookmark   November 6, 2006 at 6:33PM
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Lykaon - Ohio Zone 6a

Natalie,

I'm not sure where you can get one but the neighborhood red-tailed hawk has done wonders for the rabbit population around my house (not a joke). In September my wife saw it attack a pigeon dove napping in the sunshine in our back yard. Although I imagine a rabbit might put up more of a chase.

If you can't get a hawk to hang-out then my previous recommendation of Liquid Fence should work.

Maggie: I too don't think the rabbits actually eat the hosta. I think they just like to munch on the petioles and remove them from the crown. I usually find the leaves within a foot or so of my victimized hosta.

    Bookmark   November 6, 2006 at 9:01PM
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natalie4b(7b GA)

If rabbits do not eat hostas, it must be some other creature, since my hostas are eaten to the ground, and practically no leaves are left behind.

Hawks are awesome! We have some of them flying above - they take my breath away. I am not sure what kind they are red-tailed or what. My husband said he saw the neighbor's cat carrying a baby rabbit few times on our property.

I will definately give Liquid Fence a try. Watching my flowers disappear when I do my morning rounds... makes my patience disappear, too. I like these furry creatures, just someplace else far-far away from my garden.

Thank you all for the great advice and letting me vent.

~Natalie

    Bookmark   November 6, 2006 at 10:19PM
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dragonness

My mother said she has a hare that eats her hostas. so after a little research i discovered that the supposedly only eat the fragrant hostas. i generously donated doggy droppings off to her and told her to scatter it about. this i think helped to some degree...at least my yard looked cleaner! :)

perhaps if this ingredient was mixed up as manure tea, it would be easier to dispense...not the nicest project, but perhaps you can put your own spin on the possible solution.

Bel

    Bookmark   December 10, 2006 at 8:49AM
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