Wednesday, April 27, 2011

Building a fence to keep pe(s)ts out

When Keith and I planned our vegetable garden expansion for this year with new raised garden beds, one of the things on the To Do list was to build a new fence to protect our vegetable garden from pets (our two dogs) and pests (wild bunnies that get into our back/side yard by squeezing and/or digging their way in under the outer backyard fence).  We considered various materials for the fence - chicken wire (ugly), wrought-iron fence (holes too big), pine, etc. - and eventually decided to go with pressure-treated pine to match the backyard fence, but 4 feet high instead of 6 feet.  We would have actually preferred it to be even shorter (3 feet), but the boards came in 4-foot lengths and we didn't want to spend the time/energy to trim a foot off each board.

It's been a slow project due to our limited free time and one too many rainy days so far this spring, but we finally completed the project last weekend.

First, Keith used a post hole digger to dig holes deep enough for fence posts.  I tried to help, but I was no match for the hard clay/rocky soil in our yard. 

We then used a piece of string as a guide to evenly place the fence posts.  It was a bit tricky because this side of the garden is at a slope (as you can clearly see with the raised boxes).  Once the posts were lined up, we filled the holes with concrete mix.

Several hours later (or maybe the next day, I can't remember now), this is how it looked.


Now they were ready for the next step.  I think we did this another week or two later.  I know because I can see that sugar snap peas have all fully sprouted in this picture.

Before we put up the fence boards, we laid down chicken wire on the ground (and secured them with landscape fabric pins) so that bunnies can't dig under the fence to get into the garden.  We'll eventually put some soil over it so most (if not all) of it will be hidden under the soil.  Maybe I'll even try to grow some groundcover-type of plants or flowers over it to make it look a bit nicer.  For now, we're satisfied with its functional value.

And here it is, the finished garden fence with a gate in the middle.  We even have a small piece of garden art.

My co-worker Jamie gave this to me last year when she left our project.  It just makes me smile every time I look at it on my way into our new vegetable garden area.


RandomGardener said...

Good job on the construction! Fence is a must when growing veggies(I don't care much for flower plants) Bunnies eat off every single leaf that grows! Your garden is off to a great start this year!

Jody said...

So lovely, a perfect fence for the perfect setting. I hope you have just as much success with your vegetables this spring!

Alison said...

Congrats on the new fence. I had to do something similar in a previous garden to keep groundhogs out. It worked, but it was a pain to build.

Corner Gardener Sue said...

That's a great looking garden and fence. I know you are glad to be finished with the project. We just finished putting chicken wire around our chain link fence. It's not pretty, but so far, it's keeping the rabbits out.

One said...

I am impressed. That is what I need. A fence and many raised beds. I have thought about this for a very long time and finally settled with many large pots instead. My dogs find raised beds cooling to lie down on. If they find a toad in there, disaster happens.

Kaytee said...

The fence looks good, and oh-so-functional. And your garden beds look great too!

Mr. H. said...

Congratulations on a job well done, your fence looks great.

Sara said...

When we first started gardening, we ended up fencing in our garden to protect from chickens. It comes with blessings and problems, but at least we didn't keep having disasters with chickens scratching everything up and eating the rest. Be careful of air flow. You have a benefit with holding air in, unless it is cold air, in which case, it can be a detriment early or late in the season. Very tidy job!

Gingerbreadshouse7 said...

A terrific idea and a job well done! It looks beautiful and I'm sure will be worth all your efforts :o)

thyme2garden said...

Everyone, thank you so much for taking the time to read this post about our new fence and leaving kind comments! It's really encouraging to get positive feedback from all of you. :-)

mahesh said...

Good information on this post. Also, it is really nice to listen all your words. Thanks for sharing this.
Treated Pine Posts

Toronto Fences said...

The most important benefit a fence will provide is safety. The fence can keep your children and your pets safe and secure in your yard.

Toronto Fences

Christian Renwick said...

Your fence looks so great! I hope all your effort in putting it up and protecting it has been worth it. I like the natural look of the wood. Did you leave it looking like this or did you paint or stain the wood?

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