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preventing gophers in garden beds

hi everyone on OG i am new to gardening and in about two months when my compost is ready i will be laying down garden beds. i live on a ranch with an acre of land in the city. i have lots of gophers and don't want them in the new garden beds so i was wondering if at the bottom of the garden beds if i were to lay down some wire mesh would this keep the gophers out of the beds? i have tried getting rid of them with gum like juicy fruit, they have been eating it but still no deaths is there an organic way to rid these guys from my yard and or keep them out of my garden beds??
 
You can line your beds with mesh, has to be hardware cloth. theres a demonstration at these sites

http://www.sunset.com/garden/p...-bed-00400000039550/

http://www.reneesgarden.com/articles/raised-bed.pdf

I just go the straight trapping route but lose a few plants because of it, I'm slowly converting to mesh under the beds. Trapping seems to work pretty well apart from the odd one which seems particularly leery. Usually avergae about a dozen a yr so probably not too bad a problem but I'm sure others have it worse.
 

Inland Southern California USDA 9b, Sunset 19

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First, outting out gum in an effort to kill off unwanted pests does nothing except gives them something to chew on while they look over your garden to see what is even more tasty. The myth is that the gum will clog up their innards and thery would then starve to death. If it does not happen to you it will not happen to them.
Putting down hardware cloth under your planting beds can get to be quite expensive. Some sources suggest fences around the perimiter and buried at least 6 inches deep with an L shaped bit extending outward from the fence and the top 18 inches not tied so if the wee bugger climbs the fence falls outward and they fall off.
 

The sign of a good gardener is not a green thumb, it is brown knees.

West central Michigan along the lakeshore.

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Hi organic mama...get yourself a good dog. That hardware cloth is effective...but $$ and only protects from underground assault. I have seen them climb up, and over my brother's 5 garden fence and graze on the bounty. He had problems getting out...then a red fox started hunting and it was amazing to see the fox appear each and every time the gopher did. Haven't seen him for a while, must be grazing in the big garden in the sky.
As for my property, I just let the dogs out. They keep the gopher from going anywhere near the garden fence. Of course my dogs are all bluster, no aggression. But youde never know that with their response.
 
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CLAUDE, I wish you lived closer and could come visit with your dog. I just discovered that voles are tunneling over to my lily bulbs and eating them! Grrrrr.
 

 Zone 7b  Southeastern PA

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Thanks everybody. I'm gonna ditch the gum and get some traps (any brand or specific ones that work best?) I was hesitant about letting my cat and dog get near the gopher holes because i thought they might get bit, but I'm gonna give it a go. If i can find a affordable strong enough mesh/hardware cloth i'm going to add that as well as about a foot of perimeter underground the beds too. Also do you think if i purchased some fox urine and poured down the holes and around my yard they would leave? my neighbor tells my there is also a possum in the area , hopefully he wont be a pest. Thanks again guysSmiler
 
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I also forgot to add that I will soon be getting some free range chickens will this help or fuel the problem or neither?
 
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The chickens can produce their own set of problems but will not add to those the gophers create. Fox, Coyote, etc. urine is a waste of your money. Perhaps this episode of Growing a Greener World, http://www.growingagreenerworld.com/episode209/
might supply some useful information. They address larger critters and means of control and Joe Lamp'l doe4s state they will address others in another episode. I have not seen that one yet.
 

The sign of a good gardener is not a green thumb, it is brown knees.

West central Michigan along the lakeshore.

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There are many questions about the way that the urine is collected, that are not for the faint of heart..I thought about using it too until I read about collection practices. IDE prefer to give hubby a few beers at dusk and let him sprinkle ... it's just as effective.
 
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There's some useful info from this University of California pestnote on gophers

http://www.ipm.ucdavis.edu/PMG/PESTNOTES/pn7433.html
 

Inland Southern California USDA 9b, Sunset 19

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What kind of problems will the chickens cause? i really want to be able to provide fresh organic eggs to my family and friends but if is going to cause lots of problems around my yard id rather not get them. The video was quite helpful now i wont be wasting my money on products that don't work.thanks kimm1
and don't worry folks i wont be purchasing any products made from cruelty and thanks for the heads up on that. Do you guys think it would be cruel to catch or buy a garden snake and put it in the hole? I keep reading about all these "solutions" don't really work and the best thing to do is let nature take its course. I wish the huge red tailed hawk that lives in my neighbors tree would just take care of the problem but she never flies over our yard.
 
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i meant gopher snakes.
 
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You probably already have snakes in your backyard and i wouldn't suggest introducing one, its probably illegal to release anyway without a licence.
It all sounds good but with all these natural predators they usually reach a balance with the prey population and will never eliminate your problem. Trapping is the way to go and is really very effective if you're not going to invest in the hardware cloth to line your beds.
 

Inland Southern California USDA 9b, Sunset 19

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organicmama91 - chickens can be quite destructive to plants. I let my free ranging hens into the garden occasionally. They eat the plants, scratch and dig up the shallow rooted ones.

My unprotected plantings (those outside the garden fence) are subject to the same thing - and the hens do like to dig a big hole and dust bathe in it. So a lot of my soft ground looks like a bomb went off because of the "potholes"

Absolutely worth it, and I hope to never have to live without hens again!
 

They say happiness is a thing you can't touch, a thing you can't see;

I disagree  - Scrooge -

North Carolina - Zone 7a

 

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It's funny because today I was making 2 more rows in my new garden area, and I heard a noise. I looked in the corner, and a gopher had stuck his head out of the ground, and was pulling a weed into the hole. My 7.5 month old puppy heard it and ran over there to "investigate." I told her good girl and she kept checking every 5 minutes

Every little bit of help...helps lol.

I AM going to dig down and lay chicken wire down for future use, especially where next years strawberry "matted row" is going.

If you find stuff that works, please post it. I have some gopher getter bait, and an old fashioned trap, but I think prevention is better. I feel cruel to use these Frowner
 
[hr]Formerly known as determined 2b healthy. We must replace that which we took, and we must realize that the earth was here before us, and will be here after us. It is up to us to take care of her, for she gives life, and can also take it.
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We had chickens get into the garden and in the process of scratching dig up newly planted transplants as well as eat some of those vegetables we planted. While chickens can aid in controlling insects in the garden they do not distinguish between the baddies and the goodies.
 

The sign of a good gardener is not a green thumb, it is brown knees.

West central Michigan along the lakeshore.

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Hey Organic Mama

In addition to the above ideas, (except the gum) my best defense has been a good offense. Macabee traps and cats have been effective for me as has been the wind driven clacker/noise makers. Resist the urge to flood the little buggers...it only fills their hot tubs.

Ceres? Wow, a true SJ Valley girl. (I'm originally from outside Visalia) Big Grin
 

Coastal Southern CA, USDA 10, Sunset 22

 

"Nothing is as optimistic as a seed catalog." Charles Mann

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As the guy from the University of Georgia states in the video wild animals will soon become used to those noisemakers just as they will become used to the smell of those soaps and many other things we attempt to do to keep them out.
A good tight fence is about the only sure means of keeping unwanted critters out of your garden.
 

The sign of a good gardener is not a green thumb, it is brown knees.

West central Michigan along the lakeshore.

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