May 10, 2008

My Ratty Plants...or...Save The Rats...or...Who Gives a Rat's Ass

I tell my daughter that when she's digging in the garden there are many things you'll find under the soil. There are earthworms, beetles, ants, millipedes, and many other surprises. My next advice will be to always wear your gloves.

The other day, I was working on a job, planting several large planter pots for a business. I was removing old plant material from the pots, and one pot had more twigs and leaves and fluff than the other pots. I was reaching in (with gloves on) and something moved under my hand.

I pulled up some of the dried grass and leaves and uncovered 3 baby Rats, curled up in a hole in the potting soil inside the pot. They were fairly large, but still seemed blind, and were rooting around but stayed curled up together in a ball. They were not pink like baby mice I've seen, they were grey.


I just stood there looking at them, and looked around to see if anyone noticed my discovery. All I could think about was the movie, Ratatouille, and Ron Weasley in Harry Potter, and the cute rats I've seen in pet stores. I know Rats are generally hated in the world, and they can spread disease and all that...(But humans probably spread just as much disease).
I felt like I was put in an awkward position, having accidentally unearthed this little nest.
After a couple minutes of pondering...I covered the little creatures up again with the bedding material, sprinkled some fresh compost on the soil, and threw some flower seeds in the pot.
Life is life. ron and scabbers
By the time the flowers grow, the Rats will be out.


GardenJoy4Me said...

Neza .. never in a million years would I have guessed that could happen !
I am still shaking my head here in amazement. I think you are right .. humans spread a lot of misery.. why blame it all on rats ?
PS .. Thank you for the black cat dedication girl ! A little early for Halloween but I am year round Halloween READY ! haha
PSS ? .. Cool "Halloween like" tree on right hand side bar !!!!
Has you daughter seen Monster House ? .. I loved the rat movie, and Harry Potter too .. I'm just a BIG kid : )

peter hoh said...

Nothing like a surprise, is there?

Greengirl said...

Good for you for letting nature take her course! Do you have any idea how they may have gotten into the pot?

Neza said...

Sure...they were born there. The pot is large- 2 & 1/2 feet off the ground. Mama Rat must have thought it seemed like a good spot.

Chris said...

Pretty cool.

The only time I ever found a rat nest was when we moved an old sheet of plywood in the backyard of my parent's house. The board had been sitting on the dirt for years, and apparently a family of rats had moved in underneath.

As soon as we moved the wood they scattered, and their movement brought out the beast in our dog. She was a 11-yr old German Shepard at that point, and had bad hips. But I had NEVER seen her move so quickly. She snatched three out of the air before they hit the ground, and she probably got 1-2 more.

Not quite as friendly to rats of a story as yours, but pretty cool nonetheless.

Wicked Gardener said...

I would have freaked.

em said...

what a dilemma! i don't know what i would have done!