Terrible Houseguests

They fully espouse

The idea that

“My house, is yours”-

Stopping by unannounced.

They decimate your garden,

Munching vegetable leaves

Down to broken stalks-

Without even a “please.”

Used to have huge zucchini leaves...
Used to have huge zucchini leaves…

They gnaw your maple

Til it’s bare,

Half-chewed leaves

Strewn everywhere.

Our maple makes Charlie Brown's Christmas tree look "full"
Our maple makes Charlie Brown’s Christmas tree look “full”

They drop piles of “waste”,

Make tracks in mud,

In their haste,

They don’t clean up.

Elk tracks.  I won’t post photos of their waste…you’re welcome!
Elk hoofprint. I won’t post photos of their waste…you’re welcome!

Yes, elk are terrible house guests,

This, I’ve recently seen.

Their destruction the only evidence,

Of their nightly partying.


Apparently, elk mating season is in full swing, and the menfolk like to impress the ladies with fine dining.  This winter, I’ll be working on better fencing for my garden, but I just might be engaging in a battle I cannot win.  From what I’ve read, elk are pretty much unstoppable.  Silly, naïve me, felt sure they wouldn’t get to our garden, which is right next to our front door.  Oh, boy, was I wrong!  Upon seeing the state of my garden, I was near tears.  My husband laughed.  He laughed!  He finds their antics amusing.

Perhaps I can laugh with him once I’m done mourning the loss of zucchini bread I won’t have the opportunity to bake.  Sheesh, if they could at least stick around for a photo or two, I might move past sulking more quickly 🙂  I’ll leave you with a distant memory: my garden before elk found it:

In loving memory of the zucchini plants whose lives were chewed short...
In loving memory of the zucchini plants whose lives were chewed short…

Thanks for stopping by and reading my Wednesday silliness!  May your houseguests (human or otherwise) be tidy and respectful!


33 thoughts on “Terrible Houseguests

  1. Lance September 25, 2013 / 6:05 AM

    They’re so rude and destructive. I love the flow.

    • jannatwrites September 26, 2013 / 9:12 PM

      You got it, Lance! Maybe next year I’ll have a better plan for my garden.

    • jannatwrites September 26, 2013 / 9:13 PM

      This all happened in one night…they’ve been back several times since, but it all started here!
      P.S. I liked your a-moosing post, Nancy 🙂

  2. momsomniac September 25, 2013 / 8:37 AM

    Ah yes, here in Colorado, I have heard tricks for keeping deer out (certain flowers), and I ring my occasional garden with hot pepper plants to keep out the squirrels. But I have never heard anyone speak of techniques to stop moose or elk.

    Poor tree! Sad zucchini-less (human) tummies!

    • jannatwrites September 26, 2013 / 9:17 PM

      Our fence around the garden was about three feet tall, which kept rabbits out okay. We thought making another fenced in area, but the fence guy said they just trample chain link. (We wanted apple trees, but have been told those are an elk favorite.) I thought maybe a small greenhouse might work, but I don’t know…

  3. Catherine Johnson September 25, 2013 / 8:57 AM

    Awh! They’ll have to watch you don’t swap zucchini for Elk 😉

    • jannatwrites September 26, 2013 / 9:18 PM

      Maybe I could bluff, Catherine! I don’t think I could actually hurt them. I still don’t know how they bribed the dogs…three dogs and nobody barks at the intruders?

  4. vishalbheeroo September 25, 2013 / 9:08 AM

    They are destructive beings. Try to scare them off by putting some equally destructive images and products in the garden:)

    • jannatwrites September 26, 2013 / 9:20 PM

      I don’t know what they truly dislike, Vishal. I read that mountain lions are their predators so I might try buying powdered mountain lion urine to sprinkle around the garden. Gross, but it might work 🙂

  5. margitsage September 25, 2013 / 10:05 AM

    Cute poem. I thought it was going to be rabbits. 🙂

    • jannatwrites September 26, 2013 / 9:21 PM

      Yes, there was a twist here, Margitsage! I had originally blamed the rabbits, until I saw my maple tree…and the hoofprints.

  6. Debbie September 25, 2013 / 10:36 AM

    What is it with men and varmints, Janna?? Your husband laughing at the destructive elk reminds me of Domer telling me the woodchuck is “cute.” Really! Then again, perhaps your husband doesn’t like zucchini bread?? Good job with the poem and the pictures!

    • jannatwrites September 26, 2013 / 9:27 PM

      Haha! As far as I know, my husband likes zucchini bread (he will slice and eat zucchini raw, too.) I got a total of three zucchinis before the elk came. Oh well….maybe next year, Debbie.

      P.S. The woodchuck is kind of cute…in someone else’s yard!

  7. GodGirl September 25, 2013 / 3:37 PM

    We don’t have elk here in Australia but I can imagine that would be frustrating! I hope your house guests pack up soon…

    • jannatwrites September 26, 2013 / 9:29 PM

      Me too, GodGirl. But if they stay around, ti would be nice to get some pictures 🙂

  8. pattisj September 25, 2013 / 5:03 PM

    Oh, dear. I’m really going to miss that zucchini bread, too.

    • jannatwrites September 26, 2013 / 9:32 PM

      I know, right? There are a couple of small zucchinis growing…maybe they will make it before frost comes. Thanks for stopping by, Patti!

  9. Widdershins September 25, 2013 / 8:49 PM

    It does appear that moosez are nigh on unstoppable

    • jannatwrites September 26, 2013 / 9:32 PM

      I like a challenge…if I have a fighting chance! Your comment made me smile, Widdershins 🙂

  10. Eric Alagan September 25, 2013 / 9:22 PM

    Elk mating season – apparently they do it quietly too, as we slept right through 🙂

  11. Sara Healy September 27, 2013 / 9:28 AM

    I liked this. I know it’s not what you feel, but it did make laugh, especially when I realized who the unwelcome visitor was with you picture and the words.

    We don’t have elk, but we do have deer and while smaller, their determination is just as strong:~)

    I am pleased,however, that you are determined to find away to keep out your unwelcome house guests:~)

    • jannatwrites September 27, 2013 / 10:21 PM

      I’m glad you found it humorous, Sara! I’ve accepted that the battle for my garden this year is pretty much lost, but I will come back fighting in the spring 🙂

  12. pattyabr September 29, 2013 / 4:58 PM

    It’s probably good to laugh at the garden when you have no control over it. Mother Nature is in control- insects, critters, weather. This has been a bumper crop year for our garden. I remember two years in a row when hail wiped out the whole garden and left it looking like shredded lettuce.

    • jannatwrites October 1, 2013 / 12:50 AM

      Yes, nature is in control. I just enjoyed the rest of the summer when nature’s ideas aligned with mine 🙂 Maybe next year, Patty!

  13. agjorgenson September 29, 2013 / 7:29 PM

    And to think I complain about rabbits!

    • jannatwrites October 1, 2013 / 12:47 AM

      Rabbits are easy, Allen (though I didn’t think so when they ganged up on my plants!)

  14. Paula J October 2, 2013 / 8:31 PM

    I feel your pain. When we have visitors, they are always so excited to see the deer that stroll through the yard and garden, munching as they go. All I can say is a muttered, “Vermin! Overgrown rodents!”

    • jannatwrites October 2, 2013 / 8:55 PM

      Hahaha! Overgrown rodents 🙂 At least you get to see them, Paula. We have stealth elk and I’m too lazy to get up before dawn to try to catch them in the act!

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