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“Fort” York? Our groundhog invasion!

Photo by Mark D’Aguilar

Most members will have read Mark’s emails on the recent groundhog invasion.

It’s aggravating. But what if we really were growing our crops for sustenance?

That our daily meal depended on what we’d grown?

What if it wasn’t a groundhog that ruined our crops, but drought, or flood, or a

locust invasion. Growing vegetables for most of us is pleasant. A way to add to our

summer tables, and learn about growing food  in the process. But what if we depended on

it and the disappearance of our precioius tomatoe plants or seedlings, meant the difference between nourishment and

starvation? There has been a lot of press about the world’s  imminent food crisis this week.

Bio-fuels taking over from crops in Africa…Sky high food prices…Global warming affecting crops…People in Peru who can

no longer afford their native crop – quinoa – because it is grown for export and our tables. The price of

coffee  sky-rocketing…It gives you pause  for thought and the understanding that we should never

take food – or at least affordable food – for granted, nor should we ever waste it.

Now about those groundhogs….

Fences – chicken wire and slant the posts slightly towards the side of the box as groundhogs dig straight down.

Posts should be about 12″ deep to prevent digging and be about 2′ above the surface.

Dollarama – a great resource for inexpensive dividers and fencing.

People resources – if  you can help your plot neighbour secure their plot, do!

From the web: Spray a solution of 1 tbsp of castor oil and 1 tbsp of liquid dish soap per gallon of warm water on soil and plants.

Jingly, jangly bits – chime contest anyone?

(Any  other ideas, please contribute…)


3 responses »

  1. Elizabeth from Etobicoke

    Nearly three years ago, on Sunday, June 12, 2011, me and a few other visitors to Fort York would go on a guided tour of the neighbourhood near the fort. Our guide, Peter, would show us the differents sites – two industrial buildings on Strachan Avenue still in use (and now one being developped into Garrison Park condos), a garbage incinerator, a slaughterhouse (Toronto Abattoirs), a coffin factory, Stanley Park (with its baseball diamond), the Old York Tavern, some workers’ row houses, a few more industrial buildings transformed into art galleries, and (on Bathurst Street) a boat-building factory which has since then been demolished. As we crossed over the steel-truss railway bridge and head back to the fort, I’d – much to my astonishment – see a groundhog make a quick appearance. I’d get out my camera, but it was too late. I’d tell Peter about the groundhog spotting – and we have them in the field around our cottage.

  2. I was walking through Fort York yesterday, right before sunset, and caught sight of at least 12 groundhogs in the fields. It was quite an amazing sight and funny to see them running up the hills and scurry back into their burrows at the sound of my footsteps – it’s surprising how fast the chubby little things move! I can only imagine how intricate their underground labyrinth must be.

  3. If you were growing those vegetables to avoid startvation, the groundhogs would be a good source of protein.


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