Trained Squirrel

“The best laid plans of mice and men often go astray.”by Robert Burns

This quote couldn’t be more fitting for me today. Some of you may remember the post I wrote back at the end of September entitled “To Bouquet or not to Bouquet” in which I described two different methods of planting. In this post, I included photos from my own planting expedition in my front yard. I planted over 300 bulbs that day of a variety of types, heights, and colors and boy was I proud of myself!

After a long afternoon of dirt and dust, digging and “troweling”, I rewarded myself to an evening of laying on the floor, playing with my girls and resting my tired muscles, all the time well-aware of the fact that I still had a bucket of bulbs sitting on the back steps waiting to be planted. This bucket of bulbs included a mixture of muscari and scilla, a beautiful combination which I intended to plant in a layer above the more deeply-planted tulip bulbs. As I lay there on the floor with crumbs of Goldfish crackers in my hair, I promised myself I would get the rest of those bulbs planted within the next day or two.

Unfortunately, life got in the way and days turned to weeks and weeks to months. It is now the beginning (almost middle, eek!) of December and I have yet to revisit my landscape. While filling the bird feeder the other day, I happened upon that bucket of beautiful bulbs and noticed something different about them: not ONE SCILLA bulb remained! The gorgeous blue-purple outer covering lay in shards all over the porch steps but hardly any resemblance of  anything “plantable”.

It’s no mystery what caused the disappearance of my scilla bulbs. We have more squirrels than you can shake a stick at in my yard (and believe me, I do!) and while they provide endless entertainment for my 17-month old daughters, I would prefer they not mess with my gardening expeditions. All of this time, I’ve known scilla to be deer resistant, which I simply assumed meant rodent resistant, too. Apparently not MY rodents. The good news is, they left the muscari completely untouched! Smart little buggers…I guess I can’t be too mad at them. After all, if I had just gotten myself back out in the dirt as I had originally intended, they might have lived to see another day. Instead, I practically spread a tablecloth on the back porch steps and lit dinner candles for them to enjoy.

So the moral of this story is two-fold. Number one: rodents eat scilla. No doubt about it. Number two: my new take on the above-mentioned quote is “The best laid plans of men often go astray because of squirrels.”

With hands in the dirt and head in the clouds,