SCREEN icon George Clooney split from Elisabetta Canalis because she kept distracting from his vegetable patch, it has emerged.
The actor, who is known to be obsessive about the municipal allotment he rents two miles from his Lake Como home, had been increasingly concerned about slugs attacking his purple sprouting broccoli.
A friend said: “Slugs have long been the bane of George’s life, but this year has been the worst ever. His broccoli plants are reduced almost to stumps.
“Possibly the pigeons have been having a go too. He’s heartbroken.
“Also his runner beans are not doing anything like as well as he’d hoped, despite putting down a lot of well-rotted manure over the winter.”
The friend added: “George needed time to get pellets down and generally sort things out vegetable-wise. Maybe put some bin bags around the base of the beans, which would discourage weeds by blocking sunlight.
“So he told Elisabetta that either she helped him with the slugs or he couldn’t go to the Cannes Film Festival. But she was really keen to spend a lot of time on yacht next to a hotel.
“Eventually George was dragged to Cannes against his will, and when he returned not only had his broccoli been devastated, but the butterflies and turned his cabbages to ribbons.
“That was the final straw.”
Allotment insiders confirmed that the Ocean’s 11 actor spent last night hanging CDs from bits of string, to keep the sparrows off his lettuce.
Clooney’s spokesman said: “Please respect our privacy at this difficult time.
“Unless you have any advice on how to deal with potato blight.”