Thursday, April 29, 2010

Rabbit Prevention and 2010 Crops

As I am busy wrapping up my bathroom renovation, and preparing for a communion and birthday party for my kids I am anxious to get my garden in. I have big ambitions this year as I have slightly expanded my garden to the other side of my shed. The first and foremost objective prior to getting any seedlings planted is to keep pests out.

Garden Rabbit Prevention

Our vegetable garden flanks our shed on two sides of which is situated right over a rabbit home. It is quite obvious these rabbits take up residence under the shed because there is a small hole under the shed and I have seen these animals enter and exit at will. They lay low in hiding however when our golden retriever is patrolling the back yard.

I have already installed chicken wire to the bottom of the shed to about six inches below grade. (I made a little trench with the shovel and anchored the bottom of the chicken wire with metal stakes). I then covered the trench back up with the soil. The top of the chicken wire was then stapled to the bottom part of the shed. Okay that part of my border fencing is done. If the rabbits decide to tunnel a new hole, they will be denied access to my garden plot, unless the tunnel deeper than six inches. The rest of the rabbit prevention involves installation of chicken wire around the remainder of the garden. This will involve plenty more chicken wire and stakes. This may seem overkill to some of my blog readers, but I made the mistake of planting baby spinach seedlings last year without any fencing and they ate them up the first night they were planted. That was six dollars up in smoke. I certainly hope that this new border will keep them out for good this year. I have a neighbor that uses a product called invisible fence or something of that sort that contains animal urine. I am not ready to go to that extreme quite yet.

2010 Choice of Crops

My children have already started seedlings about three weeks ago and they seem to be taking off in the small containers. We bring these inside the garage every night since we are not entirely clear of frosty nights up here in Illinois. The seedlings started include: dill, basil, rosemary, tomatoes, and watermelon. The watermelon is sort of a novelty and I am not sure what to expect other than a seedling turning into an enormous vine that may take over half of the garden. I plan on adding sugar snap peas, lettuce, and spinach to this group, that is of course if I can clear some of the returning raspberry plants away.

Raspberries Taking Over the Garden

I was warned by my father and many neighbors that raspberries have a habit of spreading like wildfire. I planted three little plants last summer (ironically gifts from my father) and they have now become seven larger plants this spring. While I love raspberries, I am torn on whether I should keep them or not. I would much rather utilize this space for more vegetables (as stated above). On the other hand, I really enjoyed watching the kids pick them last summer. The vines constantly produce good berries for a solid two months before they fizzle out. Besides, they go great as a kolacky filler or cereal topper. Deciding whether to keep the berries or not will be a game time decision.

1 comment:

Vivin said...

Nice read your post.