How can you keep rabbits out of your garden? Long ago, the best solution was to shoot them on the spot. But that was a long time ago. Although in some parts of the world it is still practiced, we highly discourage you from following that example (unless you plan to eat them). Alternative methods can be done today that weren’t available in the old days.

Instead, you should consider building a rabbit-proof fence. It is expensive, but essential to ward off these pests — each one of which will eat a pound of your fresh greens per day.

The Fence

Considering fencing, it must be at least 4ft high and of 1 inch or 2 inches of mesh wire-netting. Buy a roll 5ft wide, because the bottom 6 inches or so of wire will have to be buried in the ground and angled outwards. This will stop the rabbits as they attempt to burrow under the fence. They may have another try farther along, but they will eventually give up and your vegetables will be safe.

Some measures of control can be achieved by chemical detergents based on aluminum ammonium sulphate. They usually come in powder form. You will have to lay a barrier of this at least 3ft wide all the way around the section of the garden you want to protect. Repeat the treatment every two weeks, and again after rain. Not every rabbit will be put off, but it will make a significant reduction in the numbers feeding at your expense.

Rabbits dislike the smell of creosote and often veer off. You can make a creosote-soaked string stretched right around the plot at a height of about 4 inches.

You can also find the rabbit holes and push crumpled newspaper down them. It is said that rabbits are frightened by the noise of trampled paper. Rabbits will hear this sound whenever they go out of the burrow, and will then retreat to a more congenial neighborhood.

Keeping Them Out!

Rabbits are not the only threats to your garden. There are still animals you need to watch out for, such as cats and dogs. Your neighbors may have animals that wander around. The best remedy to keep these meddling animals out of your garden is to build a fence or hedge. A good hedge to plant that will prevent animals from entering your garden is something that is thorny, dense at the base and strong-growing. Plants with most of these good points are hawthorns, black-thorns, or roses.

There is no hedge, though, that can keep out all small animals on its own – nor even relatively large animals such as cats. Even with careful training and constant trimming, gaps will most likely tend to appear; becoming pathways for smaller animals. In order to block these pathways, simply cut the hedge back hard and stake small-mesh wire netting along the side.

These are just a few DIY tips to help prevent rabbits and other animals from wrecking and devastating your hard-sweat garden. You may decide to go for a more expensive solution, like erecting a concrete fence. But for a cheaper alternative, these simple tricks will turn out to be just fine.