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Aster's avatar

Why did my flowerbed cave in ?

Asked by Aster (15866 points ) August 22nd, 2014

I was ständing on the dirt part of the bed when suddenly my right foot went straight down ! I sort of screamed. When I lifted my foot up there was a hole there. My shoe was completely submerged. What happened?

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12 Answers

elbanditoroso's avatar

You must have a creek (or some other waterflow) that had washed away the soil beneath. You may have read about this sort of thing happening in Florida read this where sinkholes are created just under the land surface.

It sounds like you have the same problem on a smaller scale. Water hollowed out the ground.

ibstubro's avatar

I would guess moles. They can burrow in a flowerbed unnoticed, then the burrows can act as drainage tunnels if there is a lot of rain. Voles, if you have bulbs – they will burrow in and eat every one of them.

Coloma's avatar

Yep, Gophers or Moles.

Adirondackwannabe's avatar

Has it rained hard lately?

Aster's avatar

No rain at all but a history of moles!

Adirondackwannabe's avatar

That’s a really big mole if he can submerge your entire foot. But I guess with enough digging that’s possible.

Aster's avatar

There is actually a huge lake 1/8 mile up the street.

Adirondackwannabe's avatar

You probably have some underground water moving. That carved out the soil.

Aster's avatar

I thought so too but right next to the hole the grown is solid. I noticed our neighbor had “Mole Busters” out to her house yesterday.

majorrich's avatar

Depending on when your house was built, it used to be fairly common to lay field tile to mitigate ground water. In our neighborhood I know there to be tile going across my back yard and have several sinkholes where the old tile has failed over time. Our home was built in the early ‘60’s. When my neighbor built an extension on his garage, they broke through 4 or 5 of these tiles when they were digging the foundation.

ibstubro's avatar

What did ‘Mole Busters’ do? Is it the first visit to the neighbor?

The most likely culprit is a collapsed mole burrow. Moles are destructive alive and dead. Alive: I have ruts in my yard where the water followed the mole runs and eroded several inches deep. Dead: I have craters in my yard from collapsed burrows that, at times, give the riding mover a ‘bucking bronco’ effect. I once had a collapsed burrow that I chucked dozens and dozens of walnuts down, and ultimately filled with about ½ a wheelbarrow of dirt.

My house is surrounded on 3 sides by deep woods, so there’s no way to stop the moles from coming back.

If the mole guys used the ‘sonic boom’ method, they could have collapsed the burrow immediately.

Aster's avatar

@ibstubro I have no idea what the mole buster guy did. They just moved in three months ago. I assume it was his first visit to the house. People around here rarely communicate. Some of them walk their dogs but you don’t see people chatting in one another’s yards. If we would get out and mow our own yards I bet it would make a difference but everybody has a mowing service, garage sales are prohibited as is washing your car, it’s too hot to go to the neighborhood pool so you really don’t see people all that often.

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