Gophers and Bird of Paradise

Gardening Question From Carolyn:

I have a raised planter bed that has become a popular nibbling ground for gophers.  I’m removing the purple fountain grass that has succumbed and thinking about planting bird of paradise.  I live in San Diego about 2 miles inland from the ocean.
Thank you!

gophers photo

Answer From Pat:

You mention “nibbling”. Gophers do not nibble the tops of plants. Rabbits nibble. Rabbits can be kept out of raised beds by surrounding the bed with chicken wire or green plastic flexible fencing available at hardware stores. Rabbits seldom if ever damage Bird of Paradise.  
Gophers eat the roots of plants underground. In some cases they pull plants down into their burrows. They leave the tell-tale sign of fresh mounds of loose earth on top of the ground. The way to keep gophers out of raised beds is to nail one-half-inch hardware cloth on the bottom of the bed prior to filling it with soil. You can also trap gophers by using the “Black Hole Trap.” Purchase two traps online and follow instructions carefully which are also provided online. Do not buy the Black Box trap since it does not work.

Leave a Reply