The great tomato war


I am in a war. Not a war for territory. Not a war over religion. Not a war over personal freedoms. The war I wage is over tomatoes, and the enemy, my adversary, Sciurus carolinensis the Eastern gray squirrel. Sure he looks cute and cuddly, but don’t let that innocent demeanor fool you, behind those soft black eyes is the heart of a killer….a tomato killer!

I live in an older sub-division built-in the early 1960’s. My yard and my neighborhood is blessed with mature oaks, poplars and sweet gum trees that tower overhead providing sweet canopies of shade in the summer and piles of leaves in the fall. With these old oaks come acorns and with acorns come these bushy-tailed devils who make more bushy tailed devils. Basically I am living in the middle of a squirrel orgy, no predators to speak of, plenty of food, shelter and sex. A lethal combination for my tomatoes.

I wage this war every year and have never won. My tomato plants are loaded with green plump fruit waiting for the sun to warm their skin and turn them red. I want them vine ripe, then I will pick them, slice them up thinly and place them neatly between two pieces of white bread with a coating of mayonnaise and a sprinkle of black pepper. This my friends, is the taste of heaven to a southern boy.

But I have had no juicy red tomatoes this year, I haven’t been able to beat the squirrels to the punch. I am just one man with two arms and two legs, they are an army of thousands, okay maybe not thousands, seemingly at the ready 24 hours a day to steal my juicy fruit off the vine, take two small squirrel bites and toss it away to rot in the sun. My heart breaks every afternoon when I walk through my garden gate and see the litter of green and pink tomatoes scattered on my gravel walk, honestly I cry like a baby.

You can share all the remedies you want, I have tried them all short of blowing these gray tree rats out of the branches above with a 20 gauge shotgun which one; I can’t do and two; I won’t do. I am a man of peace, but I am also a man who loves tomato sandwiches. I am engaged in a war that I can never win and sadly it is because the enemy, my enemy is smarter and cuter than I am.



About ends and beginnings blog

I am a frustrated writer and poet waiting to be discovered. A stand-up philosopher performing on a street corner near you. A Christian with questions but I don’t want to hear your answers. A Buddhist with a bumper sticker on my truck to prove it. A collector of quotes. A grower of lettuce. The Patron Saint of earthworms who name their children after me. A cyclist whose big ass strains the seams of his Lycra bibs. I am American by birth, Southern by the grace of God. My goal in life is to leave an imprint on the lives of the people I love not a footprint on the earth. I am a son, a husband, a father composed of 65%-Oxygen, 18%-Carbon, 10%-Hydrogen, 3%-Nitrogen, 3%-Diet Coke and 1%-Oreo.
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50 Responses to The great tomato war

  1. dawnmarie says:

    Last year we had a little guy who did the same thing to my tomato plants. I would wake up every morning to a half eaten tomato sitting on my courtyard wall…caught him in the act! Little bandit.

    Liked by 1 person

  2. If you can’t beat them, trick them! I know it might be encouraging their devilish behavior, but maybe you could place other food out for them in other places(but not next to your tomato plants)?

    Liked by 1 person

  3. Lively Life says:

    Poor soul you! Interesting how this is back to back with my fathers mention yesterday. His idea to purchase a pellet gun ( he WAS a peace pro animal guy :/ ) to knock the squirrels off the bird feeder. For the first hour they are burstling and spraying and having a dance at their food party which NOONE else is invited to and when they leave, seeds are scattered and open and birdies look on in disapointment and hungry bellys!
    ALSO at the talk of my Pops, he LOVES his tomatoe sandwiches too and makes them exactly as you do. ( i haven’t heard of any other ways to make the traditional )

    Oh what shall we do with such problems eh!

    Liked by 1 person

  4. William Tell says:

    I hear they taste like chicken.

    Liked by 1 person

  5. Melissa says:

    Their ilk have taken my strawberry plants and corn stalks this year. I feel your pain.

    Liked by 1 person

  6. Patty says:

    I’m so happy with my greenhouse!
    Lost 60 plants one year due to a plague brought by rain. It hurts 😉
    And yes, I agree…squirrel tastes likes squirrel…lol

    ps. I challenged you:

    Liked by 1 person

  7. samanthamurdochblog says:

    Give up. You’ll never beat a squirrel-grow aubergines instead.

    Liked by 1 person

  8. Have you tried putting fake snakes on your tomato plants? I’ve had luck with that.

    Liked by 1 person

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