As soon as I walked into the back-yard my neighbor says "Hey Tina look at your beautiful rose bushes". [It's taken me 5 years to get more than one bloom on either of the two rose bushes] The vibrant and abundant red blooms are so amazing! My constant doting with fertilizer, bug spray, water, pruning, picking off critters, and constantly threatening/talking to the things has finally yielded great results. I could have been happy all day about just the blooms on the rose bushes. However, I continued to the veggie garden where I noticed some chew marks on the red noodle long bean plants. This just about broke my heart since before I left there were at least 9 plants out of the ground with true leaves. Now there are only 3 fully intact plants still standing tall with a full leaf.
Continuing on with my inspection I noticed chew marks on the lemon basil, okra, nappa cabbage, and a couple of the pepper plants. Now my alarm bells sounded and I decided that it was time to break out the NEEM oil and the cayenne pepper. It's very early this season but since I'm not sure who is doing the chewing it's better to get a jump on things now than later. Squirrels, mice, or chipmunks could be the culprits but my money is on the slugs. They are ridiculously destructive critters with no end to their feasting. The beer traps will be set tomorrow very early in the day.
I have pictures of the plump gooseberries, the vibrant Dianthus, honey bee with spiderwort, roses, purple tomatillo blooms, the walking onions "walking" with their baby buds, and the very first pea blooms.