Cows in the Garden . . .

DSCN0494Defenseless as our garden is, I expect to lose a few seeds to juncos, raspberries to robins, and greens to a marauding deer that discovered our yard last year.  But cows?!

The other night I was awakened at 2 am by the sound of twigs snapping and a quiet rustling outside.  I thought that I would at last have a chance to confront the deer that had been munching away at our arugula and lettuce all summer.  As I headed downstairs I heard a low, unmistakable “mooo-oo-o.”  Cows.  I ran downstairs to find four cows with their noses buried deep into our front raised bed!  My husband came downstairs to find me quietly trying to shoo them in a way that wouldn’t awaken sleeping babes.  He ran them off with a few well-aimed rocks to their rumps.

Next morning I found a patch of beets reduced to this.  They had been plucked from the ground with their tops partially eaten.  The roots, however, were unharmed and made for an early harvest.  The flower garden took an even bigger hit, with many native plants grazed down to nubbins.

The cows either entered town from the north, across Highway 36, or from Mountain Meadows, where unmaintained fencelines enable cattle to reach the lakeshore and from there perhaps make their way into town.  So ranchers, if you’re missing a few head of cattle, you might want to try cruising through Westwood to locate your strays.  In fact, please do come and collect them before they wreak any more havoc in our yard!

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