Of course I had read that a good garden fence needs to go below the surface to keep out rabbits and groundhogs, I took the easy way out and only buried few inches of the chicken wire fence under the mulch. This was actually partially effective the first year, but last year there were several shallow entrances all around. One article I read, says to dig a trench 2 feet deep and a foot wide and line the bottom and side closest the fence line with chicken wire.That sounds pretty impressive. I got started, but hand digging a trench that size was beyond my limits of fun. I backed off a little and when with 12-16" deep and 6" wide.
Here's some photos of my project:
|First, dig a trench. I used a narrow trenching shovel |
to make a narrow hole with pretty straight walls.
This trench was only 14" deep and about 6" wide.
|Push in the chicken wire and bend it outwards at the bottom|
so that about 6" covers the bottom of the trench. This way
if the critter tries to go deeper, it will be frustrated.
|Fill in the trench and compact the soil. Connect the buried chicken wire |
with the above ground fencing. I bent about 6" of the above ground portion
outward to create another digging barrier.
|Cover the base of the above ground wire with soil and then|
mulch the area between the inner and outer fence.
|This is an over-wintered rosette of Black-eyed Susan. |
It can be recognized, in part, by the soft fuzzy leaves
|This English plantain has lance-shaped, deeply veined leaves|
|This clump of common yarrow was dug out of the path of the new trench.|
|These leaves did not break ground until the last week of March.|
|There are a number of native Cardamine sp. |
around but they do not resemble this one
There are many wild garlics, both native and introduced out in the garden. Since these have a tendency to deter small mammals, I have not been targeting them for removal. I planted nodding onion, Allium cernuum, in the garden border a year and a half ago. I have seen several resprouting, some are already about 6 inches tall.
|The foliage of nodding onion is a flattened blade. The|
weedy field garlic, Allium vineale, found in many lawns
has darker green tubular leaves
|Sheep sorrel spreads rapidly by shallow runners.|
The last weed I was tossing out was sheep sorrel, Rumex acetosella. The leaves of this plant can be used as a tart, lemony flavoring in soups and salads. The plant concentrates oxalic acid giving them a tart flavor; however, it can be toxic in high concentrations. I should probably consider trying it in a salad, in moderation.