13th June 2018 at 11:15 am #47218
My no dig beds are loving this beautiful weather we’ve been having in Ireland for the past few weeks, but just over the last few days blackbirds and magpies have decided to destroy the edges of the beds in their search for worms. The beds have no wooden sides, so the edges are exposed. (This is my first year trying this method and it has worked incredibly well so far in discouraging slugs).
But I’m worried about the seedlings nearest the bed edges. Some have already been pecked or crushed by foraging birds. Does anyone have any suggestions as to how to protect them?
Many thanks!13th June 2018 at 1:52 pm #47219
Converted no diggerParticipant
You would swear they had shovels. Have they not heard of no dig yet.
Its the same here in my garden but I have found other years the blackbirds only do it for a few weeks while feeding young.
I have most of my beds covered with crop cover. It can be reused for years. But they are getting at the ones that have no cover like potatoes and garlic. I just rake them back up every day.13th June 2018 at 3:57 pm #47220
Ha ha! Yes, I think we need to enrol these birds in a no dig course! Thanks for the crop-cover tip. I’ll try that.13th June 2018 at 7:36 pm #47221
Yes, we’ve had blackbirds digging and disturbing our edges in search of worms. But it’s only been a problem when they are nesting. I was somewhat exasperated (sp?) last year but seem to have cracked it this year but tying up silver strips of ribbon (as in gift ties) at strategic places along the beds. I remove it after the blackbirds have fledged as i want birds in my garden under all other circumstances! It was a cheap solution and worked for me.13th June 2018 at 8:36 pm #47223
That’s a great solution – I’ll definitely give it a go. Thanks!29th July 2018 at 2:36 pm #47829
I’ve been growing potatoes in 3 raised beds 1.2m X 3.1m, with wooden sides. A few too many possibly, but we’ll see what crops I get. After planting they all sprouted well and soon had lovely green growth. As soon as I “composted up”, using my own compost, the local birds had a field day, probably blackbirds digging around amongst the compost. They obviously loved it, plenty of worms. I found the only way was to totally cover the raised beds with netting. This solved the problem and also stopped the potato foliage from falling over in the wind. My maincrop Scottish Pink Fir Apple, actually outgrew the netting as it grew taller than me, over 1.8 metres. Is this a common height? It was in a new raised bed built this year with about 15cm of soil and 10cm of compost. I do hope the great top growth is reflected under the ground with loads of potatoes. I expect the recent heavy rain will help.
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