Something tells me the squirrels in our area are practising birth control… or they’ve moved to a squirrel-loving neighborhood far, far away. We haven’t heard much scurrying on our metal roof and gutter, nor any loud squirrel-squabble on our front oak tree where the large busy bird feeder hangs. nor see any “claw-print” on our bananas which are ripening… Yippee!
This a bunch which can be observed closely and frequently when sitting at my laptop table ~ no squirrel (so far).
green bunch right outside our computer room window
A bunch in our backyard began ripening & we (the owners) began the debate of whether to harvest or not ~ in case of a possible attack (like in the past) by the Squirrel Squadron.
The ripening bunch ~ to harvest or not to harvest …
We decided the proverb “Better Safe Than Sorry” applies in this case so out came the knife and down came the bunch. We’ve had some with cereal, made smoothies and left the bunch hanging from the arbor over our back patio, visible through the glass door, (instead of the garage) just to see if the nasty squirrels will attack.
just like in grandma’s old village house
Our Australian guests are arriving tonight … guess what we will offer for breakfast tomorrow morning?
After posting about the nasty squirrels ~ whom I call Food Wasters, I received some advice from Judy Dykstra-Brown.
Apart from deterring squirrels, I hope this will help those bananas in my yard to grow really big and fat.
(male flower cut off)
(all wrapped up)
The bunch is now without the male bloom and all wrapped up in a transparent, bottomless garbage bag.
Thanks Judy!! I can’t wait to see what’s the outcome.
Squirrels are an Edible Gardener’s nightmare. They do not just devour food crops when they are hungry, they will take teeny-weeny bites out of every fruit and leave their calling-cards or I should say clawing-cuts on whatever they touch. I will dislike them less if they finish what they started with, like we were taught as children.
It is raining heavily on and off so we thought the Squirrels would be taking shelter in their den/nest/cozy corner and we wanted to leave our bunch of bananas to further ripen on the tree for just a couple more days. What did they do? Claw, chew and destroy of course … 😡
The saved bunch
No choice, the bunch had to be cut off and brought indoors for ripening. After all, it is us human beings who planted, fertilized, waited for our ‘fruit of labor’ and they (the squirrels) are simply food wasters.
Should anyone successfully invent a Squirrel repellent, do please, please, let me know.
Despite freezing some and giving some to neighbors, with so many bananas ripening all at once from our recent harvest ~ we decided to try dehydrating some. Not new to many but the 1st time for us. We just hoped they were not over ripe.
sliced them up
I check the garage before going to bed last night and (good grief!) I thought I was walking into bakery. The beautiful aroma was unbelievable.
Hey! They came out better than expected and still very sweet.
After the bouts of rainfall we’ve had the last 5 days, the banana plants look quenched and refreshed. This led me to double check 1 of our earlier bunches for its possible harvest status.
Less angular, roundish with a tinge of yellow = almost ready for harvest.
Then I saw a hole!! The frost blanket used to camouflage the bananas had been chewed through and a few ripe ones have been devoured. *sigh* Those squirrels have outsmarted me (again). 😦
No choice ~ they have to be harvested and left to further ripen indoors. So …
Into the garage ~ hanging from the tool shelf.
If anyone has advice on how to outsmart those destructive squirrels, please share.
UPDATE 07/07/15 : Ripening faster than expected but no complaints.
This is a crucial early symptom of a banana plant’s pregnancy; they are actually not trees per se. Treat her with loving care & feed her well for she will soon (in approximately 6-7 months, depending on the weather) be “bearing fruit” .
Destructive Squirrel destroyed whole bunches where red-arrowed.
Squirrels may look cute but they can be destructive! They do not just eat 1 fruit then move on to the next. They just take 1 bite then pluck & chuck. This I’ve seen personally but only managed to get 1 shot of them after ripping off loads of green bananas & then jumping off to the next bunch to begin more destruction.
Yet I can’t bring myself to kill them 😦
My next step is to outsmart them & hope to keep my bananas in full bunches instead of 2/3rd destroyed.
Raja Bananas in formation
I’m about to take a 1 month vacation and have a young bunch of Raja bananas now in formation. I’ve been staring at them hoping for a solution to come to mind. Yesterday, it just came to me “bang!” (like Eureka!). I need something porous but opaque, strong & water resistant, so that those mini-monsters can’t see the Rajas ~ hmm … perhaps a seed bag can be used as a cover (recycling ♻) since I’m not physically around to scare them.
Seed Bag is now Banana Bag
Size is right.
Stitching is easy, using jute strings & only tie-strings are needed to be put in for easy untying & retying if needed.
Banana Bag in place with 3 Tie-Strings
My 2013 “conceived” bananas, which survived winter with frost-wrapping, began ripening on April 1st, 2014. Before I knew it, I found some scratched and partially “eaten”. 😦 So naturally I thought it was the birds and wrapped it with a netting. Until yesterday that is …. I saw with my own eyes that it was actually those nasty Squirrels!
What is left of that whole BIG bunch is now in the garage. I must read up and learn how to outsmart those Squirrels.
Posted in Bananas