I live in southeastern Virginia. I've got your basic house vegetable garden
with Tomatoes and Peppers. I've also planted a couple of Eggplant and some
Pattypan Squash (acorn squash to some). The Pattypan has fairly large leaves
with little spikes on them, as do the stems. But I came out yesterday and
something had eaten most of the leaves of one plant, and some off the other.
Some of the leaves were down to the stem (which is cylindrical and hollow).
The Pattypans themselves were not eaten (though something has chewed on a
couple of them a bit).
Also, oddly enough, I had some sunflower seeds that I noticed sprouting, so
I went ahead and put them in the ground. They've been growing well (the
largest is only about 8 inches tall though). But today I just went out and
something has eaten the leaves off them as well.
I'm sure we have rabbits in this area, though I've never actually seen any
in my neighborhood. I live on a wooded marsh and I do have Raccoons (I've
seen one trying to get into my bird seed container). Rabbits I would think
would eat the vegetables!!! I would think the marks on the Pattypan came
from rabbits. But do they eat the leaves? I mean, I know rabbits will eat
grass and lettuce when you feed it to them, but those spiky leaves off the
If not rabbits, what other animals might do this? I wouldn't expect a
Raccoon to eat leaves - or even a Fox, especially when there's some other
things like half-ripe banana peppers and green tomatoes around, not to
mention the close to ripe Pattypan itself. I've had things get eaten in the
past - but always the fruits of the plant (these by the way are not bugs I
imagine - they've been sprayed with insecticide, and that's a lot of leaves
for one night!), not the leaves.