Field to Table Sob Stories

Have you a sob story about a gardening mishap/failure? I just experienced the total destruction of the greatest sorrel plant I’ve ever cultivated. It was 3 feet wide and at least 3 feet high, lush and so verdant green. The culprit was the new mama doe whitetail who somehow got into my very well fenced garden plot. She must have nosed her way in the gate. Tomatillos, tomatoes, new raspberry suckers will all come back, but not the sorrel. She took it to the ground. Aaaaargh. I had plans for that sorrel.


Deer are the worst! I had to stop planting tulips anywhere other than right next to my front porch because no other area of my yard is safe from their voracity.

As for a gardening failure, my entire garlic crop mysteriously up and died this year in early May. I had almost 200 plants and I only harvested about 10 scrawny bulbs total. :sleepy::sleepy::sleepy::sleepy::sleepy: So frustrating!


So, so many. One year, something (had to a be a mole, right?) pulled my bean plants back into the ground and poof! no bean plants. It would’ve been impressive if it weren’t so tragic.


I have so many too, but the worst was probably an entire large garden wiped out by a herd of cows.


The greenbelt around my city is disappearing as new neighborhoods are built, and as a result the deer have moved into my neighborhood that is near a ravine. The tulips we had from the 1970s and 1980s disappeared about 5 years ago, when the deer and rabbit population increased. I planted around 100 bulbs 5 years ago. In 2020, no tulips bloomed, and in spring 2021, 1 tulip bloomed.

Last Nov, I planted around 80 tulips. The shoots were coming up, and around early April, I noticed the deer were starting to chew them. I bought some deer repellant spray , and sprayed all my tulips, repeating after each rain.

I had around 65 tulips bloom this year. I also put a layer of chicken manure on the topsoil, which apparent dissuades squirrels and chipmunks from digging up bulbs.

Last year, a cute little vole took down all my eggplants and green beans. I commissioned an owl box, to have an owl move in, to take care of the vole, but no owls moves in. A vole moved into the owl box last fall :rofl:

My main sob stories involve insects. The flea beetles that take bites our of every single arugula plant, the cut worms that destroy my zucchinis. And the blight- mid August, blight kills my tomatoes, and powdery mildew starts to damage my zucchinis.


Wow! These are sad stories! I’ll have to see what I can come up with.

Tulips, daffodils are all targeted by those venison.

I have a mole from hell. One thing to raid my garden, another to tunnel the whole way down the side of my house. No big deal right. Spring rain and it flooded part of my basement. I will no longer live peaceably among moles. I finally got that one with a shovel. I sure miss my dog. Source of pride for him. Great mole, rabbit, gopher, woodchuck, squirrel, possum, killer. And he knew better than to try a skunk. Good boy! I see we have a bobcat in the neighborhood. Wiped out my rabbit population, save for one. That is one smart rabbit. I have the fattest vole cruise my yard. I also have a horned owl about 500 yards away. Only a matter of time.

Moved into an owl box. That’s cute stuff.

Powdery mildew is a nasty pest. Turkeys will ruin some field corn. I have a healthy slug population, too. They seem to prefer tomatoes over beer. Sickening! Maybe I better up my beer game.


Did you know deer are so adept they can remove every last blueberry from a bush without disturbing a single leaf? There stood our once-loaded blueberry bush behind a gate inadvertently left open. Bushy, lush and undisturbed, except every single blueberry was gone.

I would have liked to have seen this. In my minds eye I picture nibbling teeth and pursed lips attached to a vacuum cleaner hose.


Did they trample it or eat it? Either way, that suuuuuuuucks!

They leave my daffodils alone, thankfully - hyacinths too. Right now I’m trying to keep them away from my tomato plants, with limited success. Scavengers!

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I didn’t, but now that you say it, I am wondering if it is deer rather than squirrels that keep stealing all of my blackberries. No damage at all to the vines, fruit gone. Grrrrrr.

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Both, the farmer paid dearly for the damage.

I have given up on the garden . Planted tomatoes. Gone . Dolores and now her siblings cruise the yard . I throw old vegetables in the yard and fruit . I used rake a bazillion crab apples and other each year . Last season every single apple was eaten .


I have a deer proof greenhouse for my tomatoes, however it doesn’t keep out the slugs. I have 5 apple trees so the deer love me in the fall. They are welcome to them.


I’ve had Columbia ground squirrels haul off my garlic bulbs, take down my raspberries and my prized currants, the pine squirrels take away my tulip and daffodil/narcissus bulbs, the voles girdle my honeycrisp trees and the deer eat everything in sight INCLUDING the catnip they used to be so adverse to. Every year is an adventure. We had a big ginger tom tabby who took care of the smaller varmints for years; may he rest in peace. I’ve often thought of building a 6’ high brick enclosure…


Maybe it was neighbor kids in a deer costume!

Just kidding. We moved into this house in early July (20 years ago) and my MIL was helping us get stuff organized. She went outside for a while and came in with two large bowls full of blueberries.

“Where’d you get those?”
“Your blueberry bushes.”
“What? I don’t have blueberry bushes!”

Well, turns out I do have blueberry bushes. But they no longer fruit much, if at all. In the intervening years, the trees have really grown up around them and they don’t get much sunlight.

Same thing has happened with the wild blackberry sticker bushes. As the trees have grown up, they’ve mostly stopped bearing.



Last year our parsley and basil did well.
This year, they are dying within a few days of being planted. The leaves are being chewed bare. I am not sure what it is, thought it was insects, sprayed with Earth’s Ally brand anti-manythings organic spray. No results.
Then today I found a small dried snailshell in the bed, so maybe it’s snails. I just sprinkled diatomaceous earth and will wait to see what happens.
DH suggests a fork and garlic butter. Might need to try that next.


re your sorrel, I’d cover it and continue to water, etc. Sorrel is resilient. We have to hack ours down several times a year so it doesn’t become a kudzu. If there are roots remaining, it will regrow, I’m sure.


Husband planted several bulbs worth of sprouting garlic. Doing nicely until suddenly eaten to the ground. Observed: CROWS.