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    Rabbit Proof Fencing to Protect Your Garden

    Authored by Carol J. Alexander

    Rabbits. Either you love ‘em, or you don’t. It’s hard to believe such a cute little animal could cause so much devastation in the garden. After all the hard work you’ve put into sowing and weeding, they come in to do the reaping. And you’re left with nothing. If this sounds like your never-ending story, it’s time to build a rabbit-proof fence.

    How to tell if you have a rabbit problem

    This may sound silly, but maybe it’s not Peter Cottontail helping himself to your squash and beans. After all, other critters like vegetables, too. If someone’s eating from your salad bar, and it’s not you, here are the signs that it’s a rabbit.

    • Droppings–Rabbit droppings are pea-sized balls you’ll find in little piles in the garden.
    • Tender shoots disappear–If you’ve waited with bated breath for those bean sprouts to emerge, only to find them disappear overnight, chances are you have a rabbit.
    • Chewed plants–A rabbit’s teeth make a clean cut. Your plants will look as though they’ve been trimmed with pruning shears.
    • Tracks–In soft soil, look for tracks. A bunny trail looks like two small feet followed by two large feet. 

    How to choose the best rabbit fence for your garden

    Several types of fencing make suitable rabbit barriers. But before you start shopping, there are a few things you’ll want to consider.

    • Appearance–If image is important to you, you’ll want to consider how the fence will look around your garden. You certainly don’t want to groan whenever you walk outside because your outdoor space has lost its appeal.
    • Budget–The cost of rabbit fencing varies widely. Start with a budget in mind and get the best quality you can afford.
    • Installation–Some fences are easier to install than others. Permanent fencing will take more time and skill. Others install more quickly. Know what you’re willing to invest.

    Top rabbit fences for your garden

    Now that you know what you want your fence to look like, how much time you’re willing to put into its installation, and what you can afford, it’s time to look at the top four types of fences for deterring rabbits.

    Poultry wire

    Chicken wire is popular because it’s easy on the wallet. It comes in various widths and thicknesses and even comes coated. Choose fencing with 1-inch openings or smaller. To erect a permanent fence, you’ll need metal T-posts or pressure-treated fence posts to attach the wire to and a gate for the garden entrance. Or, you can choose to use it as a temporary measure secured with wooden stakes and zipper ties. When building the fence, bury the bottom four to six inches in the ground to deter digging.

    Welded wire

    Whether galvanized or PVC-coated, welded wire is a sturdier option than poultry wire. Baby bunnies are pliable little creatures, so use wire with 1-inch openings or smaller at the bottom. Or, you can buy welded wire designed specifically for rabbits. Since it is a heavier gauge than chicken wire, welded wire is more suitable for permanent fencing. Of course, if you’re afraid they’ll dig underneath, you can always attach a few inches of chicken wire to the bottom and bury it in the ground.

    Electric wire

    Electric rabbit fencing has electrically charged wires that deliver a mild shock that won’t harm the rabbit. Like a dog fence, it trains them to learn the boundaries. These systems are more expensive than other options and typically sold in kits that include everything you need. Electric fencing can temporarily be used while rabbit activity is high. 

    Panel fence

    The fastest way to barricade small furry friends from the garden is to use push-in garden panels. This fence type is available in various styles and materials, like vinyl, metal, and cedar. The panels have stakes on the bottom that anchor into the soil. Again, ensure you use one with 1-inch openings or smaller. The benefits of this style of fence are that you can put it up in minutes, remove the panels, and store them when you don’t need them. However, it is a costly option.

    You may need a rabbit-proof fence to reap more of what you sow this gardening season. Find everything you need to protect your veggies in our latest fencing and gate catalog.