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Tip for stopping mice from digging up pea seeds

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Yes. The early pea pleases the hungry mouse.

Tall peas can be sown in guttering (because you need fewer plants) - though I find that's much too shallow to keep them well-grown until the mice look elsewhere - so I put a train of bottomless brick-shaped pots/rings in the gutter first - I make these by cutting out the straight section of 3L milk containers - they also mean the clumps slide out neatly into the trench and the ring can be lifted off or left as a slug barrier. You can also fit 4 in a seed tray, but then you need to wrap the bottoms so you can lift them out (leaving the bottom attached along one long side works OK as a flap).

With early dwarf peas this is too much work, but I find anything that stops the mice sniffing them out will do the trick - you can even lay mesh straight on the ground because they can't be bothered burrowing under it even when they have smelt out where they are - obviously the mesh needs to be 5mm or less, but "metal lathing" used by plasterers is perfect - and often available in skips - the gaps are also big enough for the shoots to emerge - I'm not saying that mice never eat shoots but the real prize is the seed.

Give peas a chance (Lennon) - the price of peas is eternal vigilance (disputed)- if you want peas prepare for war (appropriately that's pinched from "Vegetius" ~430AD).


PS. Funny smells on the seeds will put the mice off - but only for a couple of years,  they learn to associate the smell with food - they are hungry enough to not care about the taste and they are smart enough to take the skin off anyway... You could try a different smell each year, paraffin, jeyes, white spirit, jeyes, paraffin etc.


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