Gladiola bulbs being dug up

Three times in last month whilst tidying up various flower beds in garden, I've moved some gladioli bulbs (and some attached to a reasonable sized plant) that I've dug up to different locations. Come the next day or so, I've found a big pit where I'd planted the bulbs and nothing where they'd once been. The last time I moved the bulbs I heavily patted down the soil and placed them deeper but it made no difference.

I don't want to imagine what's eating them but I do want recommendations for how to move them without them getting dug up and eaten as I have more to move.

Posts

  • FairygirlFairygirl west central ScotlandPosts: 26,942

    Stephen - have they gone completely or are they being left?

    If it's the former, I'd suggest human intervention  image 

    If it's the latter, a couple of sturdy layers of chicken wire over them and pegged down will keep smaller animals away, but it might be something bigger as the bulbs are usually too deep for squirrels, for instance. Foxes? Badgers? not sure. The chicken wire may deter them though, so worth trying I think. 

    It's a place where beautiful isn't enough of a word....


  • They've gone. I assume eaten. One bulb that had some leaf stem growing out of it had the leaf bit left behind but no bulb :(

    I was thinking of putting a big pot on top but wouldn't be surprised if they dug around it. I think gladioli bulbs have a strong scent?

  • PalustrisPalustris Posts: 3,169

    A deep hole like that definitely suggest badger to me. They will eat a fair number of different bulbs and once they get the taste for them they will continue to dig them up. We have lost over 1500 tulip bulbs this last few months. Very difficult to stop them too!

  • pansyfacepansyface PEAK DISTRICT DerbyshirePosts: 15,298

    I'D AGREE WITH BERGHILL. BADGERS. YES, ONCE THEY GET A TASTE FOR SOMETHING YOU CAN'T PUT THEM OFF. I HAVE HAD AN EIGHT FOOT LONG ROW OF CARROTS (LEAVES LEFT BEHIND NEATLY) GO IN A NIGHT. AND AN ENTIRE ORDER OF AUTUMN CROCUS WENT IN THREE NIGHTS. NOTHING STOPS THEM. THEY LAUGH AT CHICKEN WIRE.

    Apophthegm -  a big word for a small thought.
  • BLTBLT Posts: 525

    Is it just Gladioli bulbs only 30% of mine produces leave even.. I do have Squirrel problems and was advised to plant bulbs deeper but they still get dug up and sometimes left of the surface with teeth marks visible ..Even Hyacynth bulbs were dug up and they were planted 6 inches down..Potatoes and garlic and shallots gone too...

    Last edited: 29 June 2016 00:38:55

  • I'm not sure about Badgers. Unlikely they'd get into garden easily, plus I might have exaggerated how "deep" the hole is. If you imagine you was about to plant a decent sized daff bulb and had dug a hole for it, then what I'm seeing wouldn't be much difference from that.

    Google tells me that rodents love to eat such bulbs but usually by coming from beneath the bulb. I have once seen a squirrel in the garden within last 6 months, so I'm putting that as most likely but won't rule out other rodents.

    For time being I'm not going to move anymore gladioli until I'm formulated a plan :)

  • PalustrisPalustris Posts: 3,169

    If you think it is a squirrel then the answer is to plant the corms in a ball made from chicken wire netting. The stems can grow through it, but squirrels find it hard to chew through the wire. A badger would not care.

    OR. Plant the bulbs in one of those perforated pots used for pond plants and put a layer of chicken wire over the top and bury the whole thing.

  • BLTBLT Posts: 525

    My gardens back and front are fully fenced and gated.. Fences have concrete bases and posts so no room underneath.. Never heard of badgers climbing a 6ft fence.. Its a regular occurence..I tend to lift bulbs and then store them until replanting in autumn, if they were planted in balls of chicken wire that would be difficult.

    Currentlythe wild life seems to be winning..image

    Last edited: 29 June 2016 23:36:04

  • Hmmmm. Well. Maybe badger's then but it wasn't a massive hole/pit dug where bulb was. Do they dig small holes or are they big ones?

  • PalustrisPalustris Posts: 3,169

    They dig large holes in borders looking for bulbs. smaller holes in the lawn looking for grubs. One dug a hole three feet across and 18 inches deep in one of my rock gardens looking for a bees nest.

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