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Building a Garden Fence


Wood or metal stakes | chicken wire | spade | mallet | wire cutters


A simple garden fence is a great idea for keeping sane. It is really distressing to spend hours and hours planting and caring for your plants . . . and then to have it all ruined by a night's nibbling by rabbits, or a stampede by the neighborhood dogs.

You may, or may not, need a garden fence. Ask neighbors whether they have used them. They aren't expensive, so it might be a good idea to protect your garden safe from intruders.

Probably the simplest and best building material is chicken wire. Also known as "poultry fencing," it comes in widths that students can easily step over, so you won't need to build a gate.

Place stakes made of either wood or metal into the ground by digging a hole with a spade and packing it back in, pounding the stake down with a heavy mallet.

Wrap the chicken wire around that border. Clip a few places with the wire cutters to free the wires to wrap around the stakes on each one.

To keep animals from burrowing under, bend the bottom foot or so toward the outside so that it lays on top of the soil for a foot outward. They won't dig under all that - probably.

You can doll up a rather plain-looking chicken wire fence with wooden pickets. And it's fun to have a garden arbor with climbing flowers or grapes at the entrance.

You also can plant blueberry or raspberry bushes or rosebushes around the outside of the fence, for a softer look that - because of the thorns -- still signals "keep away."

Some people like to plant a little patch of clover OUTSIDE a fenced garden, just for the bunnies - to be neighborly without sacrificing any of your own wanted food and flowers.

By Susan Darst Williams • • Projects 02 © 2010

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