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 Farming and Gardening in Puna
 Strategies to keep rats off tomatoes
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EightFingers
Punatic

USA
2525 Posts

Posted - 05/24/2019 :  22:12:24  Show Profile  Reply with Quote
I have a few tomato plants in containers and wonder about ways to keep rats off them. Theyíre just getting started so I thought maybe some planning might be in order.
I will have netting for birds, but I imagine rats could blow through that no problem.
So, Iím looking for suggestions!

Puna: Our roosters crow first

ElysianWort
Punatic

USA
1661 Posts

Posted - 05/25/2019 :  07:48:34  Show Profile  Reply with Quote
I'm curious why you think rats will pester the tomato garden and have you experienced this before? I question if they will touch them at all.

I'm guessing you don't have cats around the house. That is by far the best way to keep rat populations in check.
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1voyager1
Kamaaina

USA
809 Posts

Posted - 05/25/2019 :  08:51:08  Show Profile  Reply with Quote
The only thing the rats seem to bother are our avocados.
They will climb the trees and gnaw on the fruit.
They have never bothered our tomato plantings.

I keep 2 poison bait boxes, one near the back edge our property next to the compost bin and one by the avo trees.
They clean out the box by the compost bin rarely reaching the one by the avo trees.
When the back box is empty, I refill it and exchange it with the one by the avos.

We do have cats.
One of them is a very good hunter.
But, M'Lady feeds him too much, too often.
He only hunts for sport.
The other is little more than a lap cat.

Edited by - 1voyager1 on 05/25/2019 08:52:34
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bananahead
Punatic

USA
1139 Posts

Posted - 05/25/2019 :  12:12:29  Show Profile  Reply with Quote
rat traps... it kills them dead... no come back...

#2 cat... also needs (other) food though...

aloha

******************************************************************
save our indigenous and endemic Hawaiian Plants... learn about them, grow them, and plant them on your property, ....instead of all that invasive non-native garbage I see in most yards... aloha
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dayna
Kamaaina

USA
999 Posts

Posted - 05/25/2019 :  17:36:37  Show Profile  Visit dayna's Homepage  Reply with Quote
Rat traps, poison, cats. All good ideas. And yes, the occasion rat does wander into my tomato town and of course its always my prized brandywine, or the first one coming up ripe that I've never grown before that they must taste test, but then not actually eat.

Dayna

www.E-Z-Caps.com
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EightFingers
Punatic

USA
2525 Posts

Posted - 05/25/2019 :  19:44:37  Show Profile  Reply with Quote
quote:
Originally posted by ElysianWort

I'm curious why you think rats will pester the tomato garden and have you experienced this before? I question if they will touch them at all.

I'm guessing you don't have cats around the house. That is by far the best way to keep rat populations in check.



I assumed rats would eat the tomatoes. Iíll be happy if Iím wrong.
They do get avocados.
Iíve got a couple rat traps, I think will be redeployed.
No cats except for a couple neighborsí that wander into our yard sometimes.


Puna: Our roosters crow first
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terracore
Punatic

5701 Posts

Posted - 05/27/2019 :  13:40:15  Show Profile  Reply with Quote
The green parts of the plant are often considered toxic if consumed in large quantities, though the literature is conflicting on whether or not this applies to specifically to rats, but they tend to avoid tomatoes more than other plants, though that could be a result of not liking the way they smell. There ARE much more toxic species of the nightshade family that tomatoes are a part of, rats may have evolved to be deterred by them.
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