Gophers Be Gone! (Or, How We Shut Out The Enemy)

There’s this thing that I have not mastered by any means. It’s called patience. It’s the quality of being patient, as the bearing of provocation, annoyance, misfortune, or pain, without complaint, loss of temper, irritation, or the like. Hmm, well that’ll get me nowhere out here in deer and gopher land. So I choose not to have it right now. I choose resistance, intolerance, impatience! The enemies are near, watching and waiting. I cannot have a garden because of them and so I must pull out all the stops to be rid of them.

If you can’t run ’em off, shut ’em out

I decided to go back to the drawing board and redesign all the gardens. The kitchen garden is half the size it used to be to make room for the market garden which has been moved closer to the house. Instead of using a squared-off area for herbs and flowers, I’ll plant along the fences and around buildings. And the location of the future greenhouse has moved as well. All so we could do this:

Like a moat around a castle, a trench went in that completely surrounds the gardens. We decided to go about 3 ft deep to install gopher wire (hardware cloth) vertically in the ground. While gophers will dig deeper to build a nest, the tunnels that span out from the nest don’t go very deep at all. We rented the trencher (which was a breeze to operate and super fun too) and now the hubby wants one of his own.

We packed it in pretty good but to be safe, it should be watered down and packed some more.

I should back up a bit because we first dug holes for the fence posts, then dug the trench. We put the trench along the outside, but I suppose it doesn’t matter as long as it’s close enough to connect them together in the end. BTW, we found the posts on.. (wait for it) …Craigslist of course! It was a great deal and I’m very proud of just how cheap we are. 🙂

The corner support posts were cemented in below…

…and welded together up top. Brackets that tie it all together should work just as well.

Lay the gopher wire down and run the fencing over the top. Secure the fence to the posts with wire ties. I call this *wobble-wire* fence. I know there is some fabulous technical name for it, but it is designed to “wobble”, acting as a raccoon deterrent too. They hate to climb it and will usually give up.

Secure the gopher wire to the fence. Wire or even zip ties would work here.

And finally, add two or three lines of single wire across the top (secured with wire ties) if you too are as cheap as I am and end up buying 5 1/2 foot fencing. Add the sparkly streamer thingys to the top wire so the deer can actually see it. If you like to splurge then just buy your fence at 7-8 feet and you’re good to go.

Wait. What’s this? Well I’d like to see you try it dude!

And try he did. But he failed. Whew! It was a big task but so worth it. Time to get my gardening on…