Contaier height or other means to keep away critters

tnkrerMay 19, 2012

We have rabbits chipmunks, squirrels and voles (field mice) that we have seen and probably moles. I have also seen skunks and racoons make their rounds at night. In past couple of years all the vegetables we planted in the ground were eaten up by some of these (don't know which). That was one of the reasons to move to building a big planter!

Now I am worried that 29" tall container may not be enough to keep these guys out. Can you share any experience about what height will keep them out? To be safe, I am thinking that I will have PVC pipes screwed to the container on inside and sticking about 18" and then wrap 1/2" hardware cloth (or chicken wire) around the planter and tie with zip ties. That would give me 4' height, (Will be somewhat painful to work with it though :(

Here is the planter that I am working with

I am committed to eating at least a few tomatoes this season that I have grown! (Even though at the rate I am going, that tomato is going to cost me upwards of a dollar!!

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You should be ok with the setup you describe. If you have a lowes near by, I would suggest getting the repellent spray and spraying around the planter.

Had similar problems. Ever since I did that they have been staying away my 5 gallon buckets and planters.. The peppers and tomato plants have been untouched.

    Bookmark   May 19, 2012 at 6:59PM
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I would put hardware cloth or chicken wire on very bottom before filling up with the soil to prevent digging from the bottom (UNLESS YOUR BOX SITS ON THE CONCRETE OR ANOTHER SOLID SURFACE). I am not sure how large voles & field mice are, so make sure the holes are small enough for them not be able to get thru. Chicken vire is least expensive, maybe you can use 2 overlapping layers (on the bottom). Either sit the box on top of it or staple wire mesh to the inside.

    Bookmark   May 20, 2012 at 8:27AM
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I am not worried about critters getting to it from the bottom. The planter sits on the concrete floor, There is no space to enter the bottom area and the bottom is about a foot off the ground. This picture will give a better idea ..

During sprint, the rabit had made a home in our 15" planters and gave birth to 4 babies! I moved the planter to the woods, no idea if the rabbit found it and tended to its young ones. I don't really know if 29" is tall enough for rabits or for other rodents. (Also can squirrels/chipmunks climb on the wooden box? I know they can climb on trees, but they have many places to hold on to on the tree bark)

    Bookmark   May 20, 2012 at 7:17PM
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Squirrels...they can climb up the wooden fence, I am sure they can climb the wooden box...

    Bookmark   May 20, 2012 at 11:00PM
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Hi neighbor !
I've been lucky the last couple years and have avoided offering a buffet to all the woodland creatures in my neighborhood. In addition to the critters you mention we also have raccoon, possum, woodchucks & deer. So far... so good. The link goes to a site where they're making "Bone Sauce" to keep deer away from saplings. Might work for you as well. It seems that when i put in the ground to grow they're more likely to get eaten. When mine have been in containers there's no problem. If the problem persists I'd consider an electric wire. I started my tomatoes from seed & under lights for the 1st time this year & will have my first ripe tomato before June 1. Best wishes !

Here is a link that might be useful: Bone sauce video

    Bookmark   May 24, 2012 at 11:54AM
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Yes squirrels will climb almost anything, maybe put in 4' solid walls around your containers, but that would block the sunlight.

Electric fence or a cat.

    Bookmark   May 25, 2012 at 2:44PM
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Hi Grosumvegs .. Thanks for the link. I don't have to worry about the deer though. They rarely visit my house and never the front of the house. Always around the back in the woods. I had the plant outside for a day and something ate the flowers :( Its delicate work, so I don't think its critters. Squirrels/chipmunks .. may be there is some spray for keeping them away. (However, this planter is next to our front door steps, so I am not sure I want to use fox/coyote urine ..

    Bookmark   May 26, 2012 at 8:31PM
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squirrels can be tenacious. We have 2 30 gallon plastic containers in our garage with wild bird seed in them. They both have tops that fit quite securely. We have had squirrels get in them repeatedly, the only way we have been able to keep them out is to put a 50 pound scrap of granite on top of each container. I wouldn't have believed it was squirrels if I hadn't seen them fleeing the crime scene several times

    Bookmark   June 1, 2012 at 2:32PM
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