Gardening is one of the few activities we’ve enjoyed throughout the seven years we’ve made Grenada our home. Edibles fresh from the garden are a special treat, no matter the amount of work.
A treat for us but equally a treat to the three iguanas who have decided our garden is the best in the neighborhood and come regularly to share the harvest. Or better put, to devastate the harvest. They do have their preferences, i.e. bok choy, kale, young bean plants, my gorgeous giant lilac hibiscus and okra.
So, the battle lines have been drawn. Hubby, inventive as ever, comes up with different deterrents. He built a cage of thorns around the okra. Pretty impressive. Not to the iguana, however, somehow the beast has managed to stick his nose into the thorn cage enough to get most of the young leaves.
Next, the beans. Hubby built strong wire mesh fences around the plants. Brilliant. However, iguana figured out that after a while, beans, which climb, will be higher than the wire mesh. Gone are the tops of the bean plants.
Someone told us the best deterrent is something called “black disinfectant”. Spray it around the paths where the iguanas go, around fence posts, around the plants, etc. Well, what we ended up with was an evil smell in the entire garden and iguanas who didn’t get the message that they are supposed to go out of their way to avoid this. They just went ahead and munched our planting to their heart’s content.
One success is planting cauliflower plants densely in between eggplant (which they do not like) onions & peppers. So far, they’ve left them alone.
Someone told us iguanas hate onions of any kind. OK, so plant seedlings & surround them with green onion plants. Useless. The iguana trampled down the onions and munched down on the young bok choy.
We discovered that blowing a shrill whistle will startle them and make them scurry away. Ha! Once, but seeing that no harm came to them, now they just look up and continue on their way.
If I see one, I quickly run down and fling a towel @ it. That works but not practical, as it would require me to stay in the garden all day.
Desperate people have suggested we put poison out around the young plants. This we will not do. As much as the beasts are tormenting us (and I think enjoying it), I cannot see killing such magnificent creatures.
So, we battle on. The hibiscus recovered last year, the beans are pretty hardy, the okra is a fighter… so there’s hope.
When all else fails, we can always re-plant.