After working hard in the garden, you’ll want to find a good barrier to block animals from stealing the fruits of your labor.
Hennepin County Master Gardener Jamie Sledd says, before you choose a type of fence, ask yourself what you want to accomplish with it.
She says in her garden the deer is her nemesis, but she also has to deal with little creatures like chipmunks and squirrels.
"The thing that was most important for me was to be able to keep the critters out," says Sledd, "but I also didn’t want to see the fence."
She says she had a few running starts before finding a fence that suited her and her budget.
"I have taken bamboo posts and I've actually put fishing line about a foot and a half up and about two feet up," says Sledd. "The deer can’t see it and they’ll actually walk into it and it will startle them and they will turn around and walk away."
While it worked, Sledd says it didn't hold up to heavy snowfall. She tried Liquid Fence, an animal repellant, but says it was messy and she had to keep reapplying it.
In the end, she went with something sturdier. She created a barrier around the outside of her entire garden using fencing from a roll she bought at a hardware store. She says it didn't cost too much, about $20, and it was easy for her and her husband to install.
The fence does have bigger holes that don't keep little critters out, so she did add a second fence made of chicken wire around her vegetable garden.
She says it's important to determine what type of animals you want to keep out and get fencing that's appropriate for it. She says hole size is key when choosing a type of fencing. The smaller the hole, the greater number of critters you keep out. Also, make sure you install it in a way that will make it difficult for animals to get around the blockade.
"You want to make sure you get it low enough or even bury the bottom part of the fencing so that the chipmunks can't or the squirrels can't crawl underneath it," says Sledd.
Sledd says the right fencing shouldn’t be difficult to install and it shouldn’t be too expensive. However, you might need a little patience and a few attempts before finding the right one for you.
July 10, 2012