How Does Your Garden Grow? By Bird Proofing

Most people when asked that age old nursery rhyme question, “How does your garden grow?” would spew out, “with silver bells and cockleshells, and pretty maids all in a row.”  If you are the wise, experienced gardener you may have a different answer, “bird proof, from grass to roof.”  Not only does it take watering, pruning and fertilizing to get your garden and yard green and blossoming, but it takes action against the pest bird that can wreak havoc on your property and peace.

The time, effort and money spent on gardens and yards in spring should not be wasted.  The last thing we want is to pick the peaches and apricots off the trees that have already been taste tested by birds.  It is also not very appealing to serve fresh garden tomatoes that have been half eaten already.  So how do you best bird proof and protect your precious gardens, yards and homes?  Physical, sound and visual deterrents that is safe for all and humane for the bird.

Physical bird deterrents work by preventing access to the area the birds are drawn to.  For instance, bird netting could be used to protect any fruit trees or blueberry bushes you may have in your yard.  Bird proof netting is lightweight and very easy to use.  It will not take away any aesthetic beauty from the colorful fruits as it is virtually invisible.  It can be used for any garden plant as well.  Many times the birds will sit in wait on the roof ledges.  Installing plastic or stainless steel bird spikes will keep the pest birds from landing and roosting. All physical bird deterrents make a very unwelcoming environment for the birds.

Sound bird deterrents can actually be quite fun to use.  It takes some time outside to investigate and determine which pest bird is hovering around and sitting on your tree branches waiting to feast on your harvest. Once you have decided which bird is the culprit, select the bird sound on the sonic unit; place it anywhere in your garden area, patio, gazebo or roof top.  Turn it on, adjust the volume and watch the birds being chased away by their own predator and distress calls. Sonic units are very easy to use, and can run day and night, depending on how you set the timer.

Visual bird deterrents can be very useful in an variety of areas.  If you have a pool in your backyard, there are inflatable balloons that can float in your pool which actually confuse and frighten the birds away.  The balloons as well as hanging bird deverters have an iridescent foil eye that has a shiny reflective surface, and predator eyes that will make the bird turn and leave and avoid any areas where these bird proof deterrents are.  They are very easy to hang in your fruit trees, pool area or patio covers.

There is no need to worry about the fight-or-flight response of the pest birds.  Using any of the deterrents will induce a flight response.  The goal is to bird proof your property safely and humanely.  Get out your gloves, do your gardening, or just lay by the pool knowing you have protected your home by taking the time to bird proof the needed areas and look forward to a fruitful summer.

Kathy lives in Southern California where she enjoys writing, knitting and crochet.

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