Monday, October 3, 2011

October Garden Calendar in San Diego

Within the Garden - William Templeton

Summer has drawn to a close as cooler temperatures and shorter days takeover. Luckily our mild climate still allows for abundance in the garden and there is no shortage of events to inspire your fall plantings this month. 

October 8th - This Saturday learn how to Design your Garden with Native Plants with Greg Rubin at the SD Botanic Garden from 9 - 12pm at a cost of $25-30.
October 8th - Learn how to Grow Your Own Food for free with VGSD at Olivewood Gardens. Class 1 of 3 is from 8 - 12pm and introduces you to all of the basics.
October 8th - Stop by the booths at The 4th Annual Sustain La Mesa Environmental Festival which is held from 10 - 2pm.
October 10th - The SDHS host highly entertaining author of Wicked Plants Amy Stewart who will present her new book Wicked Bugs. The event starts at 6pm and is $10 for non-members.
October 13th - The Center for Sustainable Energy host arborist Leah Rottke as she speaks about Planting Fall Trees for Spring Vigor from 5:30 - 7:30pm.
October 15th - The SD Farm Bureau host the 2nd Annual Farm Tour from 9:30 - 3:30 pm. This tour features 6 farms and the opportunity to see how mushrooms get their start, visit the Stone Brewing Farm, learn how to best grow avocados and finish with a wine tasting. $20 for adults, $10 children.
October 15 & 16th - The SD Botanic Garden will hold their 29th Annual Fall Plant Sale from 10-4pm that is free with admission.
October 19th - Enjoy pumpkin carving, food, music and the film Nourish at Seeds at City Fall Festival from 11 - 2pm.
October 22nd - Help to sustain the Seeds at City Urban Farm through their Young Farmers Fundraiser starting at 3pm within the Wild Willow Farm.
October 22nd - Learn to build a Hydroponic Fall Garden with AGPals at the SD Botanic Garden from 9 - 12pm. $70 pays for the class and materials.  
October 23rd - Planning and Planting Fall crops will be the topic of this free class taught by Farmer Bill at City Farmers Nursery from 1:30 - 3:00pm.
October 29th - Learn How to Compost for free at the San Diego Zoo from 8 -10am at this event sponsored by the Solana Center.

Did I miss your event? Email me at

Tuesday, May 31, 2011

June Garden Calendar in San Diego

Marcela Camarena Lubian
The gardens are in bloom and the calendar is chocked full of fun and inspirational garden happenings this month.

June 2nd - The Best Sustainable Fruit Trees will be discussed from 5:30 - 7:30pm at this free class which will be held at the CA Center for Sustainable Energy.
June 4th - Succulent Reproduction is the focus of this class that teaches how to revive old plants and start new ones for $35.00 from 10:00 am - 12:00 pm.
June 4th - This free Gardening 101 class will cover seed starting, irrigation systems and water harvesting from 9:00 - 12:00 pm at the Solana Center.
June 4th & 5th - SD Cactus Society's Annual Show and Sale will be held at Balboa Park from 10:00 - 4:00 pm.
June 5th - Choosing the Best Irrigation System is covered at Liberty Farms from 11:00 am - 1:00 pm for $35.00 and covers what irrigation will best meet your needs.
June 7th - Learn How to Start & Manage Community Gardens with the Solana Center at this free class from 6:00 - 8:30 pm that is taught every Tuesday of the month.
June 7th & 14th - Aquaponics Workshop will be held over at the Ecolife Foundation for $30.00 which includes lunch.
June 11th - This free class covers Xeriscape: Low Water Use Plants at the Walter Andersen Nursery in San Diego at 9:00 am. On the same day Summer Vegetable Care and Planting will be covered at the Poway store from 9:30-10:30 am.
June 11th - The final, free Gardening 101 class will cover pest, weed management and cooking and sharing from 9:00 - 12:00 pm at the Solana Center.
June 12th - Beehive and Frame Assembly will be the focus of this 11:00 am class taught at Liberty Farms for a fee of $35.00.
June 12th - Free Winemaking Demonstration will be held at Curds & Wine from 1:00 - 3:00pm, RSVP online.
June 18th - SD Master Gardeners Summer Plant Sale will be held from 10:00 - 3:00pm at Balboa Park. Arrive early for the best selection!
June 25th - Planting for Challenging Areas will be covered in this free class at City Farmers Nursery from 1:30 - 3:30pm which includes hills, shade and areas with poor drainage.
June 26th - Poultry Care and Management is the topic of this 10:00 am class taught at Liberty Farms for $35.00 that covers selecting the best breed for you and how to care for your chickens.

Did I miss your event? Email me at

Tuesday, May 10, 2011

Inspiring San Diego Home Gardens

The last month of garden tours have been full of inspirational design. It was such a delight to see how many people have converted their lawns and other water hungry plants through the creative use of succulents and drought resistant plants.

Combinations of color brightened up containers and landscaping.

It was also great to see how many people are now keeping backyard chickens!

And finally a few words of inspiration...

Tuesday, May 3, 2011


What the heck?

Before the heat of the summer takes over I tend to do alot of hand watering in the garden. Even though it takes considerably longer, because it really does no good to spray blasts of water in the direction of your plants, it has its benefits. When you hand water you tend to notice slight changes in your plants and even notice new visitors which will be the topic of the next post.

Insect activity is in full swing so you will no doubt have similar calling cards left in your yard.

Winter Squash
I noticed the lower leaves of this squash were starting to resemble freshly skated ice with strange looping trails going in every direction. Up close I could see that the leaf was literally mined as the insect moved over the surface. Which brought me to one conclusion;
Vegetable Leafminer Larvae
The pale green larvae of the vegetable leafminers adult form is a tiny fly that will lay its eggs on the underside of leaves. These tiny larvae can be spotted inside the tunnels they make which gives you an idea of how small they are. Not to worry though because the leafminer will rarely do enough damage to harm production. If the damage seems to be limited to a few leaves you can remove them which will limit spreading but if the damage is widespread the plant will still able to photosynthesize. The leafminer is also dinner for ladybugs and lacewings. 

I noticed while watering this eggplant seedling that it had lost the upper edge of it's leaf. I looked for a nearby insect or slime trails and found nothing so I inspected the bite marks. The insect here only ate from the outer edge which meant caterpillar or grasshopper. On further inspection you can see that the entire leaf was a meal, veins and all. This meant we were looking at something with strong jaws.

We were dealing with a grasshopper which everyone will inevitably find in the yard and they are unfortunately hard to catch. The more time you spend in the garden the more likely you are to inadvertently stumble into one as I have many times. Luckily the chickens prize this gourmet treat and make a fast disposal system. 

The damage on this young yellow fin potato literally showed up overnight. In order to determine the culprit I looked for clues at the scene of the crime. The most telling are slime trails or a pest that is still enjoying it's meal. I had neither here so instead I had to rely on the holes in the leaves. They were closer to the center than the edge and small to medium which either pointed to an earwig or caterpillar. On closer inspection you can see that the bite marks are irregular in shape meaning one thing:

Cabbage Looper
 The Cabbage Looper caterpillar is thankfully very easy to spot and can normally be found on the underside of the leaves on the plant showing signs of damage. You can just pick them off and in our case feed them to the chickens who love these tasty treats (another great reason to keep chickens). You will want to provide a happy home for lacewings, ladybugs, solider bugs and wasps who dine on this insect. Also cabbage lopper is deterred by compact thyme which makes a great addition to the garden.

This tomato has not been attacked by a virus or bacteria, instead it been discovered by skeletonizers. Skeletonizer damage can be distinguished by sunken in, chewed away areas of a leaf where the veins are still intact. There are many variations of this species whose moth form is also spotted in the garden. I easily controlled it by handpicking them off the leaves and the tomato has grown exponentially with no new damage.

Here is the culprit

Keep in mind for most pest there is a predator and in order to lure and keep these beneficial insects we should not eliminate all of their food supply. Also if you take away one thing from this let it be that the only spray I utilized was a hard blast of water and most damage on plants, up to 20% of the plant above ground, will not harm production. 

Any mysterious damage has you stumped? Email us at and we will get on the case.

Sunday, April 24, 2011

May Garden Calendar in San Diego

May Flowers
Marcela Camarena Lubian

There is truly something for everyone this month...

May 1st
East County Earth Day will be held from 11:00 - 3pm at the Mt. Helix Amphitheater and the free event will include lectures on such topics as growing your own food and hummingbirds in San Diego.
Replace that thirsty lawn just in time for summer with City Farmers free class from 1:30 - 3:00pm that focuses on cost and water saving alternatives.
May 3rd
Olivewood Gardens and Learning Center will offer their free one hour guided tour of the gardens and spectacular education program. Go on the website to RSVP.
May 5th - 8th 
Garden Festival at the San Diego Zoo celebrates the 700,000 different plant species and teaches guest about the many uses of edible varieties. Free with admission.
May 7th
Aquaponics - find out how you can GROW your own fish and create a closed loop system by means of Tilapia and their emulsion which becomes the perfect fertilizer for your vegetables at this free class taught from 1:30 - 3:00pm at City Farmers Nursery.
Mission Hills Garden Tour - "A Walk Down Sunset Boulevard" will showcase 12 homes and runs from 10:00 - 4:00pm. Tickets are $25 in advance and $30 at the door.
May 11th
Beginning Beekeeper class will be taught at Liberty Farms from 6:30 - 8:30 pm at a cost of $35.00.
May 12th
Re-imagining the California Lawn will be presented by author Carol Bornstein at the SD Botanic Garden from 7:00 - 8:00pm. The lecture will be $10 for members and $12 for non-members.
May 14th
Organic Gardening classes will be taught in a free four part series from 9:00 - 12:00pm by the Solana Center. Classes cover everything from garden design to cooking and sharing.
Historic Coronado Garden Tour from 10:00 - 4:00pm features 8 homes and is $20 in advance.
May 15th
Learn how to Make Your Own Cheese in this free class taught at City Farmers Nursery from 1:00 - 4:00pm.
May 19th
Growing up Vertical: The Future of Farming will be discussed by Gordon Smith at SD Botanic Gardens from 6:00 - 7:00 pm, this class is a must for apartment dwellers and is $10 for members and $12 for non-members.
May 21st
Ladybug Day at the SD Botanic Garden from 10:00 - 3:00pm.
May 22nd 
Hive Management will be taught at Liberty Farms from 10:00 to 1:00 pm at a cost of $35.00
May 28th
Palm & Cycad sale at the SD Botanic garden will feature many rare and unusual varieties, free with admission. 9:00 - 3:00 pm

Did I miss your event? Email us at

Sunday, April 17, 2011

Thanks to all that stopped by to say hi at today's Earth Day event! We are sorry that we ran out of seedlings so early but glad that they found good homes. If you have any questions about your seeds or seedlings; like how big do they get, how much sun do they like or how much water do they need please feel free to email us at with your variety in the subject line. You can also comment here and we will be sure to get back to you.

Happy Growing!

Saturday, April 16, 2011

Earth Day in San Diego

The worlds largest FREE Earth Day event is back at Balboa Park tomorrow! This event goes from 10:00am to 5:00pm but set your alarm because if you arrive before 10am you will find most of us already set up and no crowds. With over 350 exhibitors there is a lot to see, eat, hear and learn. Seeds in the City will be on the Prado with FREE organic seedlings and seeds. Don't forget to bring a tote bag because you will probably pick up tons of goodies and information.

Monday, April 4, 2011

April in San Diego Garden Calendar

Spring is here and with it exciting gardening events for the month of April.

April 9th
Cuyamaca College Spring Garden Tour - This free event has a plant and book sale as well as demonstrations all within the colleges beautiful water wise garden.
Charity Garden Tour from 9am to 4pm featuring five north county homes including a visit to the Ecke Ranch greenhouses for bargain sales.
City Farmers Vegetable Gardens 101 - In this free class 90 minute class from 1:30-3pm you will get all the basics for starting your own garden.
April 9th - 10th
Cultivating Food Justice Conference - This two day free conference in City Heights will feature workshops and lectures on such broad topics as goats, solar cooking, aquaponics, sprouting, dry farming and a seed swap. Visit the website link to RSVP.
April 10th
Liberty Farms will teach a poultry care and management class for those of you considering keeping chickens, the class starts at 11:00 am and is $35.00.
April 11th
Jeffery Bale will lecture on "The Pleasure Garden" as part of the San Diego Horticultural Society special speaker event at 7pm, the event is $15 for members and $25 for non-members. Tickets can be purchased at the door within the Del Mar Fairgrounds.
April 16 - 17th
Coronado Flower Show and Garden Tour includes 10 front yard gardens, plant sales and seminars for $5.00.
April 17th
San Diego Earth Day at Balboa Park is a free event with over 350 exhibitors and the best part is Seeds in the City will be there with free seedlings and seeds.
April 23rd
Point Loma Garden Walk showcases 3 homes and ten gardens in the area of Sunset Cliffs, $20.00 advance tickets to benefit Children's Hospital.
Citrus and Avocados a free class taught by Richard Wright at the Walter Andersen Poway store, 9:30 am.
April 26th - May 24th
Become a Master Composter - Sign up to take this 5 session course being offered in San Diego from 6-8:30 pm every Wednesday.
April 27th
Introduction to Farm Animal Husbandry will be taught at Liberty Farms in El Cajon from 6:30 - 8:00pm, the class fee is $35.00.
April 30th 
Compost Workshop - Learn how compost can benefit you, this free workshop is given by master composters from 10:00 -12:00pm at the Solana Center.
The Encinitas Garden Festival is from 10am-4pm and will feature an astounding 20 homes along with free talks, $20.00 advance tickets.
Walter Andersen Nursery Point Loma teaches their free one hour class on Growing Tomatoes at 9:00am, and Poway store teaches Water Conservation and Sprinkler Efficency at 9:30am.

Did I miss your event? Email us at

Tuesday, February 22, 2011

Hali'imaile Community Garden

Our own trials and tribulations to establish community gardens in San Diego inspired me to see how other cities, states and islands for that matter start gardens in their communities. So on the recent trip to Maui we made a stop at Hali'imaile Community Garden, the first such garden to be established on the island, in 2006.

The Hali'imaille Community Garden is an unexpected gem hidden among sugarcane and banana trees. As you drive down the dirt road to its entrance you hardly know what to expect then all of a sudden the road opens up to a patchwork of lovingly tended plots.

Elle was kind enough to meet us for a tour of the gardens and has been dedicating herself to this land for 2 years. Elle is a Southern California transplant that along with the additional members lends a hand in the compost bins, common areas, vermiculture and maintaining and clearing of new plots. The land is owned by the Maui Land and Pineapple Company and due to its odd shape the land was never fully utilized to grow their crops of pineapple and sugarcane even though both of those crops can be found there today. As a generous gift Maui Land and Pineapple allowed the community to utilize the land and just recently agreed to a five-year renewable lease on the property at no extra cost. Due to the private ownership of the land they were able to avoid the costly and daunting permitting process. 

With these exciting developments came the formation of the Maui Community Garden Initiative which "exists to proactively engage Maui communities in growing food. Through strategic collaborations and public advocacy, we provide educational and technical support for cultivating and sustaining community based gardens" The initiative is dedicated to looking towards the future as an opportunity to involve local schools and the community in educational programs centered on organic and sustainable agriculture.With these new developments the HCG has seen an increase in involvement and membership. New plots are being cleared everyday to grow the likes of Taro, Broccoli, Borage, Kale, Sugarcane and Sunflowers. The yearly costs to call a 10X20 plot your own is a mere $50.00 which takes into account your water costs and access to all the amenities, including the herb garden, fruit trees and a tool shed. The community garden hopes to maintain the upward trend in membership through continued community events.

San Diego Community Gardens

Many people often ask me if I can recommend a garden in or near their community that they could grow fresh produce in. I always say I know of several great community gardens, centrally located, but the waiting list can be up to two years long! You're probably asking yourself how that is possible in such a perfect climate town with what seems like an abandoned lot on every corner. Well NBC San Diego put together this quick video explaining why these gardens are so rare.

View more news videos at:

Basically most of these vacant lots are zoned for commercial property i.e. property that generates property taxes that go back to the city. These community gardens generate $0 for property taxes so they are essentially prevented from sprouting on commercial land. Now council members Todd Gloria and Sherri Lightner are pushing to change city zoning laws so that commercially zoned lots can become community gardens. With this change interested parties will still need to meet with the owners of the vacant land to get their permission as well as start the permitting process with the county which requires plans and a $5,000 deposit. Here are the previous application forms which are hopefully about to undergo a major face lift. Thankfully there are non-profits like IRC, Victory Gardens San Diego and One in Ten Coalition that are spearheading the movement making it easier for an individual to get involved and be heard by their government.

Lend your voice and sign the petition here to let the San Diego council members know this issue is important to you.

Sunday, February 20, 2011

What the term Urban Homestead means to us

Not just two words put together, Urban Homestead is quite clearly a way of life that describes people in their respective cities who may grow their own food, generate their own electricity, raise animals and more. These people have turned their homes into a symbol of taking responsibility for their lives. With each step closer towards self-sufficiency Urban Homesteaders have pulled the veil away from the source of all they require in their lives.

When we bit into our first homegrown tomato came an awakening, no longer did we have to imagine our food came from a sunny green farm on the hill, now we could know it for sure. Homegrown lettuce, strawberries, peppers, eggplant and potatoes followed. Why stop there? We tasted eggs from our own chickens and realized how they were meant to feel, how they were meant to look and the taste we had never realized we were missing. Then came composting our organics thereby limiting what we sent to landfills, making our own dairy products, collecting our first honey along with our own rainwater, as well as raising our own fish. Once we tasted and felt the difference we couldn't be stopped. We were a force, a growing, raising, eating force that took all of our neighbors and family members by storm with our new inspiration. We couldn't tell enough people about what they were missing. We spread the word by phone, email, text, tweet and post. This was a call not for a new and exciting movement, but for a return to our self-sufficient past.

The words Urban Homestead don't define us, no word or words could ever hope to express what we are and what we have gained through our return to a simpler life. Taking away the ability for all of us to pigeon hole ourselves with the term Urban Homestead doesn't change who we are or what we have accomplished. I'm thankful we have come to another realization through this tribulation, one where we realize that we are not alone in this passion for what we have achieved. Our worldwide community is ever expanding in this movement to take back what we hadn't even realized we were missing.

My one hope is that you too can come to the understanding that there is little meaning in controlling a word, in losing the ability to use these words we don't lose our abilities to continue our wonderful work. We are only further inspired to become undefinable.

Wednesday, February 16, 2011

We Are Urban Homesteaders!

YES we are

The term Urban Homesteading has been trademarked by the Dervaes family.

Join the conversation HERE

Sunday, January 30, 2011

San Diego Master Gardeners Spring Seminar

The San Diego Master Gardeners spring seminar is back and registration opens tomorrow, January 31st. This year they are offering 3 sections of classes on April 2, 2011 that start at 8:50 a.m. with the last section starting at 1:40 and ending at 2:50 p.m.. If you pre-register classes are a mere $15, with a $5 dollar discount if you sign up for three classes. They have a very well rounded schedule of classes and instructors this year.

Topics include;

  • Attracting Birds, Hummingbirds and Butterflies to your Garden
  • Compost-No Longer the Dirty Little Secret in the Garden
  • Tips on Designing a Water-smart Landscape with Color, Interest and Budget Savings
  • Growing Herbs for Health, Taste and Fragrance
  • How to Get the Most Production from your Organic Tomato Plant
  • Understanding Our Soils and Simple Ways to Improve Them
  • Growing Summer Vegetables the Organic Way (taught by the inspiring Pat Welsh)
  • Successful "Green" Living Walls
  • Native Plants You and Your Neighbors will Love

The classes are going to be back at the USD campus this year.

Wednesday, January 26, 2011

What's Wrong With My Plant?

The What's Wrong with my Plant team of David Deardorff and Kathryn Wadsworth are in town to help us all answer the seemingly year round, life long question, what the heck is wrong with my plant? Their widely successful book of the same name has been a godsend in identifying everything from random black spots to yellowing leaves. Not only do they help you identify the problem but they help you find a solution the organic way. I'm very excited to get to meet these two in person! Hurry and sign up online, the class is this Saturday the 29th from 10:00am-12:00pm at the San Diego Botanical Garden.

O'o Farm

O’o farms is located in the lush green hillsides of Maui’s upcountry region.  The farm exclusively provides all that it grows to three restaurants on the island of Maui. They average 34! inches of rainfall a year and are often under a misty cover during the winter months. Even so the farm is equipped with drip irrigation because it can really get hot and humid.
When you arrive at the farms the first thing you notice is the breathtaking views, overlooking both the north and south coasts. First to greet us was Richard Clark the farm manager who has been playing in this dirt for ten years and is obviously passionate about the land which totals 8.5 acres of virgin! territory that was once home to a thriving population of eucalyptus trees and hippies. This soil is the rich choclate cake color and texture we have all been craving and can never quite attain no matter how much compost we amend into it.  I have now figured out the secret, get your own volcano!
I was happy to learn it’s not all perfect soil and ocean views, they have pest up here too. Thrips, aphids and snails are all regulars but the biggest problem is the humidity. I have enough problems with mildew as is but can you imagine an average of 70% humidity for most of the year in addition to 34" of rainfall? Cucumber, squash and pumpkins as well as tomatoes aren't fans of this climate so tend not to produce very well. O'o is all organic even though they cant legally say so, so no chemicals or pesticides. They use crop rotation, cover crops and row covers to help protect their plants.

The farm gives tours twice a week educating those who attend about everything farm including composting, vermiculture, healthy soil, chickens and growing organic food.  Speaking of chickens the farm has a great coop pictured below with a couple of wild roosters to keep the hens in check. Richard hopes to establish a rolling chicken coop here in the near future which I look forward to seeing. At the end of the tour guest are treated to a gourmet lunch cooked on site by one of their fantastic chefs Barry Clark.

My dreams and imagination are in overdrive, especially upon hearing that O’o doesn’t need to do any outside marketing. This farm works with their three restaurants when planning what to grow and takes orders daily for each menu. In addition to the tours the farm sails full speed ahead with only four (very busy) helpers. I don’t know about you but this sounds like a dream come true.

Maui Come and Gone

Kicking and screaming I've returned. We all had an amazing time and were welcomed with open arms at O'o Farm and Haliimaile Community Garden. We also toured several native botanical gardens that are hard at work preserving endangered species and agricultural traditions. It was truly an honor to share my time learning about farming on Maui and meeting the wonderful people behind the cause. Of course plenty of pictures are on there way, but in the meantime here are a couple from different hikes on the island.

Wednesday, January 12, 2011

Gone to Maui

Seeds in the City is off to explore island farming life for the next ten days. I found this great map on the Maui County Farm Bureau website that shows all the different farms and gardens. I will be volunteering at O'o farms and I can't wait to see how things are done over on the island. There will be MANY photos to follow. Please let me know if you have any suggestions on places to visit.

Wednesday, January 5, 2011

San Diego Mushroom Fair

As a lover of Italian cooking, mostly due to my infatuation with bread and cheese, I frequently utilize many different varieties of mushrooms in my cooking. They can get rather expensive once you start getting into the gourmet varieties so we have decided to grow our own starting with Portobellas. I'm hoping to get all the necessary information at this years mushroom fair which includes cooking and growing demonstrations as well as volunteers on hand to identify your own 'found' mushrooms.

When: Sunday, February 20, 2011
            from 10:30-3:30pm
Where: Balboa Park, Casa Del Prado Building, Room 101
What: All things mushroom
How: Through your generous donations

Tuesday, January 4, 2011

The Urban Gopher

Hope everyone had a wonderful holiday, now back to work! Our first post of the New Year focuses on some very late/early spring cleaning we have had on our list since our very first post where we lost our beloved artichoke.

Finding it unfathomable that a gopher could exist in a concrete jungle we searched for possible reasons as to why our plants roots were disappearing overnight. We settled on some sort of soil borne disease that fed on our plants because we had never seen any signs of a gopher. I grew up in a yard of gophers and could see their mounds and tunnels from a mile away. Well it turns out that our gopher is very sensible of this fact and has managed to keep a very low profile, until recently.

Two dead Borage plants later I finally spied a tunnel and then a mound of dirt. Now, I'm the last person who would kill anything, I save daddy long legs for gosh sakes but this guy has taken it too far. I called in our resident gopher expert for some sage advice on ending this little guys reign of terror.

Her first advice was get the right trap. Essentially the metal style is the best, the one featured on the video has been passed down through generations of gardeners but a similar style can be found at Home Depot. Secondly we looked for the most active hole and we opened it wide up to fresh air and plenty of sunlight. Now it's time to set the trap.

After the trap was placed in the hole we placed a board across the hole and fenced it off so our dogs could not be harmed by it. Now we wait...tomorrow morning I will go down and see if we were successful. If not we will explore our next options together. Stay tuned


1/7/11 The only thing the trap caught was a bunch of well packed dirt, to be continued....

1/10/11 Well R.I.P Mr. Gopher, you will not be missed. After the third try and much WD-40 we were successful in our efforts. The scene this morning reminded me of instances where I have come upon a car collision and cannot quite fathom how it was possible for the cars to get themselves in there respective locations. The gophers main hole where the trap was placed was filled with dirt and nasturtium remnants and he was outside the hole. Go figure.