Poor bunnies. Talk about profiling. Bunnies are labelled as vegetable garden tyrants. Often when I meet with a veggie gardener who is missing some leaves the bunnies are accused without question. Not only are they accused of almost all garden damage, they are the most feared thief even before the garden goes in. “How will we deal with the bunnies?” is one of the first questions we get when installing a new veggie garden. No one asks: “How will we deal with the flea beetles? or the SLUGS?!” And they should.
Well, I’ve got real news for you. Bunnies aren’t the gang leaders. After I ask a gardener, “Are you sure it’s the bunnies?”, it’s usually followed by doubt. I feel like a therapist. I then instruct them to go out after dark and look with a flashlight. Every time I do this it reveals the truth (Possibly a metaphor for so much in the world right now)- It’s the slugs! AND the earwigs! Slugs love beans. In one night, they can decimate your bean row leaving lonely standalone stems. Now I didn’t say that the bunnies aren’t in the gang. Bunnies love sunflowers, clover, dandelions, and I think they took the top off of my peas. Funny though that my lettuce is left untouched. Smaller holes in squash leaves right now are earwigs in my garden.
Everything has it’s pros and cons. The rain has been lovely because I haven’t had to water my garden lately (as opposed to some serious heat and drought this time last year), but the rain has been great for creating dark moist places for slugs and earwigs to breed.
Before you blame the bunnies, get out to your garden when it’s dark and make sure you’re not spreading fake news.