DIY · Gardening · Homesteading · Urban Homesteading

Building Bird Netting Towers For Blueberry Bushes

When you first plant blueberry bushes you have to give them a couple of years to start growing before you focus on the berries. We hit that this year, and my anger at the birds got loud by mid-summer. I have worked hard to have a healthy homestead for pollinators, birds and wild animals…but could we not eat all my blueberries? Finally? I was a bit salty over them.

The irony is they don’t want the native Evergreen Huckleberries, which are just as good.

It’s Robins in particular that really love them, and oh do they love living on our land all summer. I can’t blame them for taking on easy street. I especially noticed that once we put our chickens under a covered run this year, and they all lost their unlimited free buffet of chicken feed, they started targeting the blueberries far more. They don’t bother the red and yellow raspberries, nor the blackberries and marionberries. But the blueberries they love.

I was at a friend’s homestead early in summer when I got my inspiration.

He had built a simple cage out of PVC pipes over his cherry tree.

I thought about it and realized I had all the parts. So this fall I am building the hoop system with those parts, and installing them over each bush. Once spring comes, and the blooms are pollinated, I will do the final step and cover the bushes with netting. The netting won’t be on the bushes, causing potential damage to the leaves.

Materials Needed:

  • 2 sections of ½” PVC pipes (10 feet long)
  • 1 section of 1″ PVC pipe (10 feet long)
  • Bird Netting

The PVC pipes can be found at hardware stores, are usually made in the USA. Look in the plumbing section.

The first step is to measure and cut the 1″ inch PVC pipe into 10″ sections. For ease in cutting, Kirk used a Miter Saw with a 12-Inch thin crosscutting miter saw blade. He cut a bevel at a 60 degree angle. This allows them to slip into the soil easily. Be careful when doing this type of cutting, as you are close to the blade.


You will get lots of the stake parts. So you can make plenty of these. You should get enough to make 3 full sets worth. You would of course need to get 4 more PVC pipes to make 3 hoops in total.

Figure out how high your ½” pipes must be to clear the top of the bush. This will determine how wide the 4 “legs” can be. It will be narrower if it has to be taller, and can be wider other wise.

Using a rubber mallet, pound the 1″ sections into the ground. It’s easiest if you do this in the rainy season in the PNW.

Then place one end into it, curve it over, and pop it in the other.

Do the other pole, crossing over.

To keep it from any chance of flopping, I zip tie the 2 poles together at the top, with 2 zip ties.

You will need to determine how much netting you need to toss over. In low wind season you could just toss it over. You can use loosely connected zip ties to hold it on, or use large binder clips to go around the poles. You will want to wait till you see blueberries forming (after all flowering is done) before covering.

Do check daily in case any birds get entangled. I have had birds get stuck in netting, although it had larger holes. The netting for birds is very small so shouldn’t be an issue.

Take it off after the berries are ready, and you should get a few seasons at least for the netting. The PVC pipes? I have been using mine for years for various projects and they still look fine.

See the video: