No Place To Hide

Nothing for it but to retreat to the greenhouse. Seeds are starting to pop up and the tomato seedlings are coming on, but it’s all so abysmally slow. They are cold and so am I.


Bonsai Maple Wm


Remember the bonsai acer that I root pruned last month? It, at least, has started to sprout leaves so fingers crossed all will be well.


But not everything under glass is sweetness and light. All last week Mike’s new electronic ‘zapper’ was apparently removing mice from the tool shed at a rate in excess of one per day. It was when the hit rate had started to drop off that the device found its way, unannounced and uninvited, into my domain. Years it’s taken, to cultivate the art of tranquil, hypertension-busting, greenhouse pottering..

If only the mice weren’t quite so fond of my seeds. I am instructed to report back as soon as I see a green flashing light. Worse still, so I’m told, there might also be a tail sticking out of the back of the box..


2017-11-10T17:24:53+00:00March 23rd, 2013|Tags: , |


  1. snowbird March 23, 2013 at 5:26 pm - Reply

    Goodness me, your toms are up! My seeds haven’t even sprouted yet!!!

    Your bonsai acer is absolutely lovely.

    YIKES on the mouse front.xxxxx

    • Jessica March 23, 2013 at 6:34 pm - Reply

      It was an experiment this year. I put the tomato seeds in the propagator last month, then into the greenhouse for more light as soon as they germinated. In the colder environment they’ve grown more slowly, but seem sturdier than in previous years.

  2. Countryside Tales March 23, 2013 at 5:52 pm - Reply

    Oh dear, poor mice (although v annoying about the seeds- I sympathise). I should concentrate on the beautiful colour of that lovely acer instead- you can feel very smug that mine hasn’t even begun to remotely suggest leaves yet….

    • Jessica March 23, 2013 at 6:40 pm - Reply

      I know, I don’t feel happy about the mice at all. But we are getting overrun. At least it’s humane.

  3. Anne March 23, 2013 at 6:14 pm - Reply

    I have stopped complaining about the cold, having remembered that last year’s warm March meant that things flowered before the bees and flies were out and about to pollinate, which meant no quince and no sloes in the autumn!!
    If only you could use real mouse tail, as I used the mouse tail cord!!

    • Jessica March 23, 2013 at 6:41 pm - Reply

      That’s a good point Anne. Back to proper seasons (including summer??) not a bad thing at all!!

  4. Denise March 23, 2013 at 6:39 pm - Reply

    The weather has been so so so COLD!!!!!!!!!!!!! Hence my kitchen activity…..lovely and warm. I did venture out to feed the hens – warm cous cous with their mixed corn.

    • Jessica March 23, 2013 at 6:44 pm - Reply

      Ooooh, lovely Denise. Save me some. Without the corn..

  5. Denise March 23, 2013 at 7:36 pm - Reply

    Took charge of new allotment today, so time to spring clean our greenhouse and get some seeds in. But it is soooooo very cold that I fear the shoots might poke their noses out of the compost and say, ‘Not bloomin’ likely, pal!’ We did pick up some seed potatoes and shallots though. Very impressed with your tomato seedlings. Bravo!

    • Jessica March 23, 2013 at 9:46 pm - Reply

      Oh, so envious of your allotment. All that space!
      And a picnic table by the river too!

  6. Em March 23, 2013 at 7:41 pm - Reply

    At least you don’t seem to have snow. We’re just in a thick fog. Grit your teeth and pick the box up by the tail….

    • Jessica March 23, 2013 at 9:47 pm - Reply

      No snow.
      Nooooo!!! Mike wants the box, he can ‘service’ it.

  7. haggiz March 23, 2013 at 9:32 pm - Reply

    I haven’t done anything towards growing any veg this year – garden is under 5 inches of snow again. I feel like giving up this year! Your acer is looking really healthy now. Julie x

    • Jessica March 23, 2013 at 9:48 pm - Reply

      Don’t give up. It will come good. I hope…

  8. Wendy March 23, 2013 at 9:53 pm - Reply

    I sympathise; I loathe dealing with mice. I just wish they wouldn’t attack the seedlings. Like you, my greenhouse was overrun last year and I lost lots of green shoots. Hope you manage to protect your plants.

    • Jessica March 23, 2013 at 10:35 pm - Reply

      It’s so demoralising isn’t it? One day you’ve got a seedling, raised and tended with loving care, and then the next – nothing but soil…

  9. Rosie March 23, 2013 at 10:27 pm - Reply

    We are nurturing some little seedlings in the conservatory, yours are looking good as is the acer you pruned. Hope there aren’t too many green lights or ‘sticky outy’ tails in your greenhouse.

    • Jessica March 23, 2013 at 10:43 pm - Reply

      I’ve tried to make the greenhouse mouse proof, but they burrow Rosie. They’ve even chewed through the aluminium frame..

  10. Rose H March 23, 2013 at 11:49 pm - Reply

    Those seedlings look healthy Jessica even if they are cold, and I love the shot of your beautiful acer.
    We have 4 inches snow again. My seeds are still stored in the airtight box (in the house) as I cannot get into the greenhouse as it’s full of overwintering everything!
    I’ve been lucky with our wood mice so far, they are kept filled up with bird and hedgehog food and have left the greenhouse alone – the monster slugs have probably frightened them off!
    I’d be sending Mike in first to check out for any victims (sob!)
    Rose H

    • Jessica March 24, 2013 at 10:13 am - Reply

      I know just what you mean about the greenhouse – I don’t think I could get another plant in it! No snow here, but too cold (and wet) again to do anything outside.
      I’m sorry about the victims too.

  11. Josephine March 24, 2013 at 1:01 am - Reply

    Just be thankful you don’t have herds of deer choping on your plants and flowers, they are harder to get in the box …
    Your tomato plants are coming along nicely, and well done on the bonsai tree, it looks vibrant and healthy !
    Stay warm…

    • Jessica March 24, 2013 at 10:17 am - Reply

      No herds so far, just the odd one!

  12. young at heart March 24, 2013 at 10:28 am - Reply

    oooh good luck with the mouse hunt…. the first time I ever had one as a house guest was in New York, I was so freaked out I actually stood on the sofa and scremed like something out of Tom & Jerry!!

    • Jessica March 24, 2013 at 4:34 pm - Reply

      I remember visiting my grandmother’s house as a teenager. I had flatly refused to take off my boots, knowing that there was a mouse somewhere in the house. But it’s amazing how quickly you get used to them when they are everywhere! Although so far, thankfully, not inside this house.

  13. BadPenny March 24, 2013 at 11:17 am - Reply

    I really really think you need a cat ! ( or several )

    • Jessica March 24, 2013 at 4:37 pm - Reply

      But then I’d have dead mice inside the house as well.. 😉

  14. 1gus1 March 24, 2013 at 12:04 pm - Reply

    Soldiering on in the face of adversity – and mice! Well done:-) Pleased to see the bonsai has responded positively.

    • Jessica March 24, 2013 at 4:41 pm - Reply

      I’m pleased with the bonsai, though it isn’t in full leaf yet.

  15. CherryPie March 24, 2013 at 3:36 pm - Reply

    I can imagine that having a mouse zapper to hand would spoil your tranquility…

    • Jessica March 24, 2013 at 4:45 pm - Reply

      I keep thinking of the noise that flies make when they hit one of those purple zapper things… if such a device still exists.

  16. Simone March 24, 2013 at 5:23 pm - Reply

    I haven’t even sown any seeds yet! Your bonsai is looking remarkably healthy. I hope you don’t find too many ‘tails’ of woe!

    • Jessica March 24, 2013 at 5:38 pm - Reply

      ‘Tails of woe’ would have been a good title for the post… wish I’d thought of it!!!

  17. steph March 25, 2013 at 11:29 am - Reply

    looks like the mice got tired of the cold around here, too—-just saw evidence of their scavenging in the cupboard. not sure I could deal with a zapper. Your tomatoes are looking great!! Doing heirlooms?

    • Jessica March 25, 2013 at 5:02 pm - Reply

      Oh no! That’s not nice to come home to..
      Sungold, I think it’s a modern variety but grown by popular demand!

  18. Natalie April 3, 2013 at 6:30 pm - Reply

    Oh dear, when I find a tail sticking out of my box, I call Gordon!!!

    Love the bonsai. And your tomato seedlings look great.

    • Jessica April 3, 2013 at 9:58 pm - Reply

      So do I. Mike, not Gordon!

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