I live in rural MT and have planted petunias for the past 16 years along my garage. The past 3 years I have been fighting SOMETHING that is eating the tops or pulling them out of the ground. I have used a pest control spray that is supposed to deter just about anything, and yet for that past 3 and now 4 years, I have not been successful. I thought it might be turkeys, which is why I got to this site, but it does happen at night, so maybe not. I also saw holes and mounds of dirt in my garden so I thought moles, mice, voles something...but again this stuff is supposed to deter them. Frustrating as for 12 years I had beautiful frothing petunias...Any suggestions?
We are often asked 'what is eating my plants?' and it is difficult to say what is the culprit. Nocturnal animals are out to eat and if food sources are low, they will dine on just about anything.
You can set out a field camera and try to capture the culprit. Then you can determine the best way to protect your plants. If you don't have one see if you can borrow one from someone.
You can try fencing or even motion triggered lights. Hanging aluminum pie plates to scare off the offenders.
Try setting several mouse traps around the area and see if you catch a small rodent.