OK, so it's just a structure to protect the lettuce from being eaten by the birds. It's covered with the same plastic fencing that I use to enclose my garden. The top netting is only attached at the back, and hooks over the heads of three screws at the front of the cage.
The little seedlings have been moved, and nothing can eat them now. There is 12 square feet of planting space, and I set my lettuce plants in at two (or more) to a square foot, so the bed will hold a minimum of 24 plants at a time. That's more than enough for our use, now that we don't have a rabbit to feed.
I hung three S-hooks from the chain link, so the plastic netting can be raised and hooked to them for easy access to the bed.
It's pretty ugly now, but I think, as the new wood weathers to a soft gray like the cedar fence, it won't stick out like a sore thumb. I'll plant some other veggies by it......there's still enough room for some broccoli plants nearby. That should help hide it, too.
What we don't go through to keep our precious gardens safe from predators.
I think that "Thing" will come in handy! Nice Job!!ReplyDelete
Robin, the nice thing about the "Thing" is that it's completely portable. If I want to move the lettuce to another bed next year, I just pick it up and move it. The kennel is semi shaded during the summer though, so I think the lettuce will really like it there.Delete
Portable "Things" are a good thing!Delete
Birds eat lettuce? You must of caught them in the action! I've had something eating all my broccoli and cauliflower starts! Do you think it could be birds? Crazy...What ever it is wont' go to far into my yard..I like your structure:-) robbieReplyDelete
Robbie, they sure do! They don't seem to bother the red leaf varieties as much as the green, but I've had them annihilate an entire plant in about two bites from the beak! Lettuce and peas aren't safe from them here. I've also seen them take off small carrot tops, but they don't usually bother them.Delete
awesome idea! I have to convince my hubby to do this portable fencing for our flower bed so i can protect my tulips from deer.ReplyDelete
Jenny, if I can do it, he can do it ;-) It's also light weight enough for me to move around by myself. It's made entirely of 2"x2"s and 1"x2"s.Delete
Now, if I had about three of those as anti-goat devices, it might be possible to plant this spring. Those goats can eat anything right down to the ground.ReplyDelete
Dianefaith, those goats would probably eat the "Thing"!Delete
Now if you could make me one that protects my pea shoots. OK I usually just toss some bird netting over the trellis until it seems big enough that it doesn't matter anymore. At my last house the birds never ate anything. At this house they are voracious.ReplyDelete
Daphne, that structure actually protects my snap peas from the back, now I have to figure out how to protect them from the front! It's not easy to construct bird proofing for peas, as the tendrils always entangle in them.Delete
I usually put on bird netting when the peas first come up (I need to do that). And then I remove it when they start to entangle in the netting. I figure by then they are big enough. But I do try to drape the netting over the trellis and away from the peas to give them more time.Delete
Ha! Every spring for 5 or 6 years in a row now I've had new "things" in the back yard...fresh wood clashing with the weathered look of the older "things". I know that feeling. They stick out like a sore thumb. And I'm sure next year there will end up being another new thing.ReplyDelete
Jimmycrackedcorn, that's why I painted the original boxes. Some of the lumber was repurposed from our old deck and had been painted, so I just had to have it all matching. I'm over that now, LOL! Let it weather.Delete
The birds will be sad they cannot peck at the delicious lettuce. But I like the thing...you are so handy!ReplyDelete
Charmcity, the birds have other things to eat out there (my strawberries & raspberries for instance), the lettuce is mine, all mine!Delete
That is a great solution. Good job!ReplyDelete
Gardener, thanks. I've used this method, but not this particular structure, for several years now. The plastic mesh fencing works so much better than bird netting.Delete
Great idea! You are so smart. Isn't it amazing how long something takes in reality, when in the thought process, it might take mere moments to finish! Good job.ReplyDelete
Lori, when I just make up something out of my head, rather than a plan, changes have to be made. I started using screw eyes in the front and S-hooks to slip into them, but found it took too much pulling and tugging, so replaced them with simple screws, leaving the heads sticking out just enough to hook the netting over them. The 2x2s were supposed to be the upright posts, but when the box was all together I found the 2' height was too tall to lean over to reach in the back, so I tipped it over and cut the 1x2s shorter to make it fit me. It all worked out in the end. I told Mr. Granny it looks like a coffin, and if I fall in while planting the lettuce, just seal it up and leave me out there in my garden!Delete
I love it! Very good solution to the problem and it should provide great utility for many years to come.ReplyDelete
LOL, Kitsap, sometimes a girl has gotta do what a girl has gotta do! Darned birds, anyway. It's bad enough I have to fence out the dogs!Delete
What a great idea! You can use it now to protect the lettuce from birds, then cover it with plastic and extend your lettuce season through the winter.ReplyDelete
Ed, yep...that's the plan. Maybe plant a bit of spinach in it next fall, too. It actually gets quite a bit of winter sun there, but semi shade during the summer.Delete
Love it! Right now my birds are leaving my lettuces alone in favor of my PEA SEEDLINGS! Ugh... ! :)ReplyDelete
Erin, I watch for those little pea shoots daily, but nothing yet. I'll be ready with the netting as soon as I see them.Delete
That's awesome - great job!ReplyDelete
Thanks, Farmers Wife.Delete
Nice job! It is crazy what we go to to protect our garden "babies". I did something similar for my strawberry bed, out of PVC pipe, which doesn't "weather". It's going to stick out forever, but I can't aspire to the neatness of your garden for many more years, and probably a new garden location!ReplyDelete
Megan, I have a PVC and netting hoop house that I've used for the lettuce the past few years, but it's attached to a 3'x4' raised bed and not moveable. I'm going to probably cover it with row cover or fine net once I get the entire bed relocated away from my shed door, then use it for spinach and beets that always succumb to leaf miners.Delete
I really like your "Thing". So far our birds are staying away from my Lettuce. I think the Great Dane in the pin next to them is helping a bit but I might need one for some of the other beds.ReplyDelete
Christy, since my neighbor moved I might not have such a problem with them. The new neighbor cut back all the brush where they had their habitat, and she doesn't put out birdseed to attract them like the old neighbor did. I'm not taking chances though, I'll try some lettuce, unprotected, elsewhere in the garden. If it fares well, I can use "The Thing" for something else. It would also work well covered with fine net and set over the spinach and beets to keep out leaf miners.Delete
Hi Annie, What is the netting made of? The birds do not seem to eat my lettuce but I need to come up with something for my little blueberry bushes if they ever grow! NancyReplyDelete
Nancy, it's Dalen Plastic Fencing, purchased from Walmart, 3' x 50' for around $12.Delete
I think The Thing looks cool just the way it is. Nicely done in a workman (workwoman?) like fashion: plumb. level and square.ReplyDelete
Tony, it drives me up a wall when something is built crooked! From the kitchen window, The Thing looked like it was high on one side, but a trip out there with a level showed the bubble right on center! And yes, it's plumb and square as well. I made sure of that when stapling on the plastic netting, I count the squares and staple on the straight lines. My only sag is on the top, where it's only stapled along one side. I could actually design that better by stapling the front edge of the fabric to a 6' 1"x2" and letting the weight of the board hold it in place rather than hooking it to the 3 screw heads. It would be easier and quicker to access the inside like that, too....hmmmm, I might have to try that!Delete