It drives my oldest crazy every-time I start a sentence with “So I want to do this….” and he knows that means we will be working all day on one of my farm projects. I suppose the correct method is to actually put in “real” fencing, around the entire field….but that isn’t cheap, and it takes a lot of time. For now, I am content with doing simple deer fencing around each dedicated garden area. It allows the deer and rabbits access to the unused areas but also we can drive on those sections when needed.
When this particular bed was started, it was just for the blueberries. We had tilled the land, planted the blueberries we had brought with us from the previous land and then mulched heavily. I put up a simple fencing, that was really cheap fencing (see more about that choice……)
However, due to the mulching, the bed blends right in to the landscape. Even with logs around it.
In early January we added on a 35 foot long raised bed, made with downed trees. On one end I dug and moved all the rhubarb plants. Rhubarb is deer proof, so at first I was thinking of making the bed all deer resistant plants.
However, mother nature is always fun. When we had the huge snowstorm in early February, the snow quickly showed me I had issues with my design. Not shocking of course. Cheapness gets you there.
I knew I would need to redo the fencing right after the middle boy went airborne on his sled and went through the fencing. The cheap fencing ripped cleanly. Gave me a good laugh at least. I went out after the last storm cleared and knocked every fence off, to lower the weight.
But I got thinking and decided that the blueberry bed should be bigger, and to make it a berry orchard. So we took the fencing down, fixed T posts (had to roll all the logs off the sides as well). I had to do it all in one day, as I couldn’t leave the blueberries unprotected, so it was a cold and wet work day.
We dug up all the red and golden raspberry plants and moved them into the raised bed. I was able to split some of the plants and got more planted, but have room for about 5 to 7 more plants to be put in. Blueberry plants, we can fit in at least 3 more.
Now though, we can walk in the huge garden bed to harvest, and if the birds get bad we can cover the whole bed with netting easily.
Using a sturdier poly fencing, I wrapped the 2 long sides and the back with it (I still use cheap fencing, but this cost $20, not $10…..haha). The front panel is built out of metal fencing, that is 3 feet high, which I had lots on hand, in various sized pieces. I try to reuse when I can, to save money. 1/4 of each side of the front is metal, then the middle half is a massive gate we built out of panel pieces. It has a lightweight pole attached to it, to make a gate that can swing open. Oh sure….it isn’t glorious and gorgeous, but if it is functionable, does it matter? As long as it keeps the deer out, I don’t care if it looks slightly hill billy. The fence is 7 feet high.
I need to go trim the zip ties, and add flash tape (the thinner netting of the cheaper fencing makes it hard to see – flash tape catches the eye). The logs have been rolled back into place – they keep the lower fencing covered so it doesn’t blow in the wind, and helps keep down rabbits getting in. (And yes, side note: I used zip ties to do all the fencing. It truly works well, and if there is a better solution, I haven’t found it.)