Eeekk I just went out to check on my brew and as I lifted the lid a tiny mice was staring up at me. For about 10seconds we were both frozen in fear until I put the lid back on and ran inside. I’m not a big fan of the little critters and am quite creeped out by the fact they are in my compost, is this a bad thing??

At least the bins are a fair way from the backdoor so they hopefully wont be enticed to come into the house.

Its in one of the black hot bins so I cant imagine it would be too nice during the day…perhaps he only comes out at night to nestle in amongst the pea straw…

Is it a health rish having mice in your compost? I know at work they take mice very seriously as their poop and pee carry disease.....yuk yuk yuk.

Over the last month I’ve been getting all over the North Island on various missions, and my garden is singing out for me to get in and do some hard yards. Thankfully while I was away I had lovely people watering all my plants so that was really cool. There was actually severve weather patterns during my holiday and I rushed home to make sure my plants weren’t drowning! Gizzy a good one for that…it never rains and is so so dry, then we finally get a nice bit of rain. We jump for joy but all too often this turns into an outrageous downpour that lasts for days. Flood alert!

The upside tomatos were not impressed at all by that weather, suffering a bit of blight, and my scallopini and courgette have also got powdery mildew...though i think they relished with the rain as i'm still getting lots of yummy veges, and big too! I have noticed loads of the wee yellow and black ladybugs that I think are native? I hear they like to munch on the mildew so thats nice. Have also discovered lots of baby/teenage praymantises aswell so thats really cool. As for the bees they are everywhere! I feel very lucky to have such a nice wee patch of lovely insect life.

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Comment by Bridge Scully on February 17, 2010 at 9:54pm
Thanks for your comments Earl. Thats interesting about the praying mantis, i did assume they were teenages/young ones but shall take a closer look..Am hoping the cutting of my wormwood takes off, otherwise a lady at the polytech has some in her garden plot that she said I can have too. The Psyllid has come back all over one of my tomato plants aswell so am definitely needing to get amongst the wormwood spray you originally suggested.
Comment by Earl Mardle on February 16, 2010 at 9:20pm
Mice in the compost are quite normal. I give mine a good stir up with my Aussie compost stirrer on a regular basis and that seems to discourage them from setting up more than temporary home, but otherwise, get used to sharing your landscape with the wildlife.

Grow some wormwood and use it on the garden to discourage them from feasting on your food.

The yellow and black ladybugs are a mixed blessing, they feed on powdery mildew but they also spread it according to Ruud Kleinpaste.

Be aware of the South African praying mantis, it eats bees and other manti? mantises. If I remember correctly they are the ones with the shorter, broader bodies.

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