Once you set up a garden, you will realize that you are not the only one living in your backyard. Different animals will start showing up around the clock, paying regular visits to your garden. It gets frustrating when they chop down your plants and poke your fruits. Here are a few ideas for protecting your garden from these predators and reducing their damage.
#1 Build a fence barrier against big animals
Building a high fence is the first protection you should consider if your nuisance is deer. It should be at least six feet tall. Anything less deer can easily jump over it.
It might not be the most cost-effective solution, but for growing your food, it could be a good investment.
#2 Make a cage
#3 Use bug barrier
The most annoying pest in the garden are larvae such as cabbage loopers and squash vine borers. They can destroy a garden in no time.
Many gardeners use organic substances like diatomaceous earth and caterpillar killer to fight them. However, a physical barrier could be a better option. It is a mesh with tiny holes used to cover the crops. It prevents the flying insects from getting to the plant to lay their eggs.
#4 Create some noise
Noise scares animals away as they think it might be their predator. Hand objects that make noise around the garden to deter them. Some ideas you might try are:
- Hang a nail on a tin plate. Then hang the plate strategically between the plants. Every time the wind moves the plate, the nail bangs on it. The loud banging noise will scare the birds and other animals away.
- Use sun-reflecting objects around the plants, such as CDs or aluminum plates, to deter the birds.
- Use motion-triggered sprinklers. These gadgets will shoot water every time they sense movement.
- For more pleasing noise-makers, hang wind chimes around the garden.
#5 Take advantage of the strong sense of smell of rodents
Rodents have a sensitive nose. Strong scents like chili and garlic tend to bother them. Therefore, protect the newly planted seedlings by sprinkling cayenne powder on and around the plants. The potent smell will hurt the nosy rodents and stop them from munching on the plants.
The downside to this trick is that you must be consistent in applying it since the smell dissipates in the air and eventually loses its effect. Another reason is that rodents are intelligent and do not give up easily.
#6 Reuse produce containers
Strawberry containers are a great helper in the garden. Use them as a shield against birds, squirrels, and mice by clipping them over the fruit.
The downside of this trick is that it may cause sunscald or burns on the fruits. However, a simple solution is placing a cloth or a towel on the exposed side of the sun.
#7 Mock the birds
It is a fun project to do with the kids. Gather some stones that are somewhat similar in shape to the fruits you wish to protect. Paint these rocks red since it is the most attractive color to birds. Place the stone around the garden.
The birds will think these are ripe fruits and try to get them. Then, after several trials and disappointment, they will give up and look elsewhere. This trick is handy on the strawberry patch.
#8 Place water baths around the garden
Most of the time, birds are looking for water when they poke at tomatoes. Put out several bird baths around the garden for the animals to drink; they might stay away from your garden.
#9 Plant extra
Following the previous idea, provide more food for the wildlife to steer them away from the garden. There are two ways to do so.
- When you plan your garden, try to make room for extra plants to share with the animals.
- Squirrels and birds love sunflower seeds, so grow more of them in the garden.
#9 Make peace with nature
Gardening is supposed to be a source of peace and tranquility. Work on your mindset and develop a sense of co-exitance with other animals. Think of it as providing food to the weak. Once you realize that we can all live alongside each other, you will notice that there is still plenty left for you to enjoy.