One question that often comes up is “How do I protect my garden from . . . ?” I live in a suburban neighborhood with a fully fenced yard and relatively few trees around us. The benefit is, I don’t fight many pesky critters. The biggest threat to my garden are my two boys who want to “help” or just dig in the dirt.
But I did a little research and found some examples of how you might protect your square foot garden.
Fully Fenced Enclosures
This basically consists of building a “top” for your garden bed made of chicken wire. The upside of this strategy–it will protect your garden from many types of pests: birds, squirrels, deer, etc. The challenge is that it makes it difficult to work in your garden, and might not be possible for vegetables supported with a large cage or trellis. Here’s an example from Steve’s Square Foot Garden.
Fence Around Garden Bed
Another idea is to put a small fence around the garden bed, leaving the top open. It’s relatively easy to pound stakes into the ground and attach chicken wire or some other type of netting. It is important to create a way to access the garden bed so you can weed and harvest. This method would not protect from birds, but would help with cats, dogs, rabbits, etc. Here’s an example from Tim’s Square Foot Garden.
Fence Around Entire Garden
Finally, you can build a fence around the entire gardening area. With a small gate, this method makes it easy to access and work in the garden beds. It would keep out pets, deer, rabbits, but not birds. Here are two examples. The first is from Harmonic Mama, and the second from Flickr.
If you search online, you can find netting to cover your plants to protect from birds. This type of product is draped over the plant and simply lifted when you need access to it.
If you have solved this problem in your garden, share what worked and send me a picture to add to this article.