Who’s eaten my spring onions? Diary of a Rocket Gardener

I was a bit annoyed this weekend to go out to the veg patch and find that something has eaten through the stems of nearly all my spring onions. I was looking forward to harvesting them soon! I’m not entirely sure who or what has eaten them either, so I’ve been doing some research – it would be great to hear from anyone who has had similar problems if you know for sure who the culprit is!!

The symptoms:

The stem has been chewed through about 1cm above the ground. The roots are left in the ground, and the top part is left on the surface of the soil. Some are chewed right the way through, some are still hanging on by a thread.

The suspects:

These are my top 3 suspects so far:

  1. Voles – voles are herbivores and are known to feed on bulbs. There have been signs of vole activity in this bed, with little holes and tunnels near the surface of the soil. But why would they just chew through the onions, and leave the bulb and top part basically untouched?
  2. Slugs – my garden is pretty popular with slugs, but I haven’t seen any slimy trails on the spring onions, and I would have thought they’d prefer the chard that is growing next door to the spring onions. Also, I don’t really think slugs LIKE onions that much?
  3. Cutworm – this is the larvae of a moth, and the damage does look a lot like this. They do tend to eat through the base of a stem in this way. But, I thought they were a problem in summer, not now. So I’m not convinced.

The theory:

I’m not convinced, but at the moment I am leaning towards voles. But I can’t for the life of me understand why they wouldn’t then eat the bulb of the spring onions. Very odd indeed. Would love anyone’s thoughts on this… drop the team at Rocket Gardens a message if you have any ideas!!