horizontal fencing

Discussion in 'Gardening & Plant Propagation' started by WanderingOak, Apr 4, 2005.

  1. WanderingOak

    WanderingOak Well-Known Member

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    For the past few years, I have tried to have a small garden. Nothing fancy, just a few 3'x6' raised beds. Every single year, deer have eaten EVERTHING out of my garden- garlic, onions, even the tomato vines. The other night, I came home to find deer actually bedding down in my garden! Unfortunately, the HOA regulations where I live won't allow me to shoot the deer, even if they were in season. Warren county considers them to be a tourist attraction :bash:. Most of the fence solutions that I have seen are for large operations and are way too expensive for a small operation like what I have. I've heard tell that you can lay plastic netting on the ground and keep deer out that way. Has anybody had any experience with that, or am I just waisting my time? All I want to do is grow a few fresh tomatos.
     
  2. hollym

    hollym Well-Known Member

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    I've heard that too, but I wouldn't count on it!

    I fenced my front yard with frameworks made of PVC and attached the deer netting to it with electricians cable ties. It works, although they will jump through it once in a while, and I will have to fix that spot. I also use rebar to hold the pvc up. It's not the most attractive thing, but it was cheap and it works and I put up an entire yard's worth of it by myself in one weekend. Another option, that I used before this fence, was making a hoop, also of pvc over my garden beds and stretching the netting over that. That worked even better than the fence, actually, I don't think they liked the idea of jumping into it, because it was smaller and it was completely enclosed? I have a framework like that over my vegetable garden right now in fact, because believe it or not the deer netting minimized the grasshopper damage last year.

    Hope this helps? It's easy to build the frames, just use the connectors that are available, and get a pvc cutter, that makes it so much quicker!

    hollym
     

  3. Meg Z

    Meg Z winding down

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    For several years, my dad used plain ole woven wire fencing, laid horizontally. He put concrete block out to support it off the ground, and let the weeds grow through it. The deer wouldn't walk through it, because it caught their legs. They didn't jump, it either, probably because they couldn't trust where it would end. The weeds also protected beneficial insects, and gave alternate food to pests, so he had the added benefit of less insect damage...although I'm sure that depends on which weeds you've got!

    Good luck,
    Meg
     
  4. kathy H

    kathy H kathyh

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    Hollym I am thinking of doing the same thing behind my white picket fence[ which the deer just about step over :p ] What size pvc did you use? How is it holding up in the sun?
     
  5. 3girls

    3girls Well-Known Member

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    For the size beds you have, you could do one of two things. 1) cage each bed, or 2) one big cage for all the beds. PVC will only last a year or two, but has the benefit of being inexpensive. The rebar is necessary. Deer netting is quite flimsey and if they get to running, the deer will just go right thru it.

    Look at www.farmtek.com to see if they have a frame that would suit your needs. Then go to HD or Lowe's and get green vinyl coated farm fence 4' wide, and run it up and over the frame. Easy to build a door at one end with 1x2's and more wire. The only problem with that is that steel is so expensive now as is the shipping, that the costs add up awfully fast.

    Another option is to contact a plumber or salvage yard and get used galvanized pipe. You can get fittings for it just like the PVC and put it up the same way.

    Now, for aesthetics: PVC can be painted with a new paint put out by Krylon (not sure I have the name right). They also make a metal paint. If you will paint these the same color as the vinyl fence, a sort of greyed dark green, the whole fence will "disappear".

    Around the cage, grow some deer "resistant" plants (barberry, asparagus or whatever) and spray the heck out of them with a mix of garlic, baking powder, a couple eggs, cayenne and a dollop of soap. Let it sit out in the sun for a few days. Dilute it down some and put in a garden sprayer that hasn't had Round-up in it, and spray the outside bushes liberally every time it rains or every three weeks. This mix will also discourage bugs that chew, and will knock out fungus. You can buy similar stuff at garden centers.

    I wish you well--get out the canning jars!
     
  6. birdie_poo

    birdie_poo Well-Known Member

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    When we had a bad problem with racoon, deer, rabbits, and such on the air station @ Camp Pendlton, the enviro guro started using powdered & liquid coyote urine. Believe it or not, it worked. Stunk, but worked.

    If it's applied at regular intervals, it gives the impression to the critters above to think that a coyote actively patrols the area, so they leave for fear of being eaten.
     
  7. hollym

    hollym Well-Known Member

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    I used the 1/2" size for the panels, they are built in grids so that they have some inner support, sort of hard to describe, but they are 7' X 10'W and have a cross of pvc in the middle? I have had no problems with it rotting, and it has all been in place for 2 years, some of it has been around longer than that, four? I think? I re-use it when I change things. It does sort of wave/bend when you push on it, but I think that actually helps with the deer deterrent, they don't like stuff that moves unexpectedly. The netting IS flimsy, and I have had a few jump through it, but when I fix it that works? I don't know why they aren't through it every day, but they aren't, and it has been great to be able to garden without everything getting munched.

    Bought some of the new pvc paint, wow I was SO excited about that! I'm going to trellis the front of my yard with pvc framework and plastic trellis. I am, however planning to use the 3/4" stuff for the frames.

    I'm REALLY interested in that cement block horizontal woven wire idea, What width did your dad use? Deer won't jump over 4' horizontally, is that right? We don't have a lot of weeds along our fenceline, but I like this idea a lot, have wanted to fence the entire place for a long time, just don't have the juice and the money, and the existing poles are only 4' above ground.

    hollym
     
  8. hollym

    hollym Well-Known Member

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    OH! Forgot to mention that I also went around the bottom with the largest cheapest chicken wire I could find and bent a foot outside on the ground and piled rocks on it, that keeps out the rabbits, too!

    Wendy/Birdie, that really works? I have a lot of problems with all the critters that you mentioned, I'm forever running off raccoons at night, they constantly harrass my chickens and I can't even have an open bottomed tractor, have to wire the floors? We are also in a very wooded area, with a lot of rabbits, deer, possums, etc.

    hollym