Mystery gardener
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Mystery gardener

 
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Firth of Forth
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Joined: 29 Aug 2005
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Location: East Lothian, Scotland

PostPosted: Sat Sep 16, 2006 12:25 pm    Post subject: Mystery gardener Reply with quote

You know how you try at first to keep the moss at bay in your lawn - you hire the machine, rake all the moss up, reseed the grass etc etc? And then you just give up and mow it occasionally?

Well, in the last week or so, I've a mystery gardener doing it for me. I wake up in the morning to find all of the moss pulled out and lying in a heap. Foxes, cats?? I didn't know, until I saw the mystery gardener at work.





Would anyone like to hazard a guess at to identity of this helpful creature?
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Last edited by Firth of Forth on Sat Sep 16, 2006 4:38 pm; edited 1 time in total
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Seacon
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Location: Northern Ireland

PostPosted: Sat Sep 16, 2006 4:08 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

I don't know what the beast is that is scratching through the damp moss in your garden though I suspect that at this time of year it may be searching for, and feasting on, leatherjackets - the larvae of the Crane Fly or better known to us all as Daddy Long Legs flies. These hatch between now and Autumn so they are full and juicy voracious little brutes and quite a treat to any would be food hunter.

Leatherjackets can decimate lawns (mine last year Evil or Very Mad )and and also barley crops as they eat the roots of the plants.

One possibility, as I see it daily in my own lawn is birds - thrush, black bird, crow etc though I suspect from the post that it is something much more exotic than any of these. Exclamation
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Firth of Forth
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PostPosted: Sat Sep 16, 2006 4:42 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

Got it right Seacon! Nothing exotic at all. Birds it is. What I don't understand is why this has never happened in my garden before in the 15 years I have lived here.
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Haggis Hunter
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PostPosted: Sat Sep 16, 2006 5:52 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

It's the bark and potted plants that the birds rake up in my garden. I suspect with the bark that they are hunting for the slugs, but the potted plants I haven't got a clue what they are looking for?
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ghiribizzo
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Joined: 22 Nov 2005
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Location: Ferryport-on-Craig. The Kingdom of Fife.

PostPosted: Sat Sep 16, 2006 10:32 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

Haggis Hunter wrote:
I suspect with the bark that they are hunting for the slugs, but the potted plants I haven't got a clue what they are looking for?


Nano caches. That crevice at the back wall looks a suspicious place too. Cool
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Seacon
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Joined: 16 Sep 2005
Posts: 56
Location: Northern Ireland

PostPosted: Sat Sep 16, 2006 10:50 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

Firth of Forth wrote:
Got it right Seacon! Nothing exotic at all. Birds it is. What I don't understand is why this has never happened in my garden before in the 15 years I have lived here.



Thoroughly wet part of the lawn and lay out a sheet of black plastic or tarpaulin on top. Peg it down with stones overnight. Wake up in the morning, remove the cover and if you see any of these you have leatherjackets. Alternatively, carefully dig up a sod of turf, check within the roots and replace the turf.
A feast for any nearby bird who may pluck out the moss cover to get at them, just below the surface.


ps As soon as they hatch the Crane fly mate, lay eggs in your lawn (each female lays 300 eggs) and the whole process begins again.

Close your windows, lock your doors as this time next year they will be everywhere Surprised
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