Garden Pests

Critter Control

When I first started gardening the neighborhood cats quickly became my biggest pest. I built a removable garden fence around my raised beds and it successfully kept them out. But that only kept them out of my raised beds. It didn’t keep them out of my landscaping.

It also didn’t stop the squirrels. Oh and now I got a wild turkey that has apparently decided to make its residence at my street corner. It loves to hang out in my front yard and is very unaware when it steps on my young plants.

A wild turkey that has taken residence in my neighborhood

So clearly I need something beyond the removable garden fence. I’m a huge fan of Joe Lamp’l and in his podcast he is always talking about the many ways he uses cattle panel in his garden. So I jumped on the bandwagon and got some PVC-coated wire mesh from my local feed and supply store. (What I have is very similar to this.)

I’ve laid it down in my raised beds and around young plants in my landscaping. It keeps out all the critters including cats, dogs, squirrels, and wild turkeys. It can be cut with cutting pliers and I can bend it with my bare hands, which makes it very easy when I need to reconfigure things or when I want to make space for a new or growing plant.

My mesh size is 2″ x 4″, which is a big enough opening for small seedlings. And then as they grow I just cut away bits and pieces to make room.

PVC-coated wire mesh blanketing a raised bed. Holes have been cut for growing plants.

I’m slowly redoing my landscaping and when I add a new plant in I protect it by surrounding it with pieces of the wire mesh. The cut edges act like prongs and I bend them down with my hands to keep them anchored into the ground. (Otherwise the cats and squirrels will just move the pieces of wire mesh out of the way and get to their digging.)

Pieces of PVC-coated wire mesh surround a newly transplanted young plant. The cut edges have been bent down to anchor the pieces of wire mesh in place.

The squirrels are about to start ramping up their digging to prepare for the winter and this year I am ready for them!

… or so I think…

… but isn’t that the whole fun of gardening?!?! 😉


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