[NAFEX] Woodchucks or groundhogs and mulching trees

Alan Haigh alandhaigh at gmail.com
Fri May 16 10:59:51 EDT 2008

The most species specific bait for groundhogs and quite affective is broken
up cabbage to which I add some broken carrot, trailing into the trap to
override their cautious nature.  The most sure-fire way to trap them is to
set the trap next to their hole.  I have a very experienced gardener
neighbor who routinely traps them this way with no bait at all- seems their
eyes take some time to adjust to light.  Over the years I have always
managed to trap my chuck before damage to my vegetable garden becomes too
severe even if I can't find the hole.  It's helpful to know where they enter
a garden and set the trap accordingly.

On mulching I suggest that in early April (Zone 6) you spread a few sheets
of newspaper over about an 6-8' circle of ground from the base of trees and
spread hay, wood chips or whatever over it.  I use enough to completely
conceal newspaper at least.  If you want to deter competition for water and
nutrients further you can string-whack the weeds outside of this a few feet
every couple of weeks through about June.  By midsummer, research doesn't
show much benefit in suppressing competition.
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