Author Topic: How to keep Raccoons out of garden, especially Sweet Corn  (Read 22559 times)

Offline BRCincy

  • Prepper
  • **
  • Posts: 21
  • Karma: 0
How to keep Raccoons out of garden, especially Sweet Corn
« on: May 28, 2010, 10:35:28 PM »
Hello all,

First post.  I have a question for those of you who have much more experience with gardening (I just started my first garden this year).  I am growing sweet corn, bush beans, yellow squash, and radishes.  I have read, and listened to the podcast about the three sisters garden, about how the corn, beans, and squash help each other, and have these intermingled somewhat.  Some friends have told me about how they gave up on gardening, especially growing corn because the raccoons basically ate everything over the course of one of two nights once the corn was nearly ready for harvest.  I have read online that one method for keeping raccoons out of a corn patch is to grow squash within the rows of corn, and therefore prevent them being able to walk up and down the corn rows (perhaps because they can stand squash?)  Having read this, I planted squash interspersed within the rows of corn near the perimeter of the rows (hoping that all these plants will have enough room to grow).  What else can I do short of an electric fence, which is impractical anyway, to stop raccoons from ravaging the entire corn crop?  I greatly appreciate and am grateful for your comments and advice.  I am an absolute novice with all of this.

Members Support Brigade Member

Offline cohutt

  • non semper erit aestas
  • Global Moderator
  • Survival Veteran
  • ******
  • Posts: 5176
  • Karma: 176
  • Don't Give Up Your Keys
    • Behind cohutt's Fence
Re: How to keep Raccoons out of garden, especially Sweet Corn
« Reply #1 on: May 29, 2010, 05:09:20 AM »
So far no racoons for me but I did read this from Mike McGrath, maybe it helps.

http://www.gardensalive.com/article.asp?ai=962

Offline BRCincy

  • Prepper
  • **
  • Posts: 21
  • Karma: 0
Re: How to keep Raccoons out of garden, especially Sweet Corn
« Reply #2 on: June 02, 2010, 09:04:14 AM »
Thank You for the link...good suggestions out there...I read that raccoons hate the smell of cucumbers, so I will plant a few of those within the corn patch, and that a squash plant is something that raccoons won't necessarily walk through or over, so I have planted squash around the perimeter of the corn patch.  We'll see what happens...its all a great learning experience.
Members Support Brigade Member

Offline solarguy

  • Prepper
  • **
  • Posts: 62
  • Karma: 17
Re: How to keep Raccoons out of garden, especially Sweet Corn
« Reply #3 on: June 02, 2010, 03:45:42 PM »
After several years of trying companion planting, peeing on the borders of the garden, smelly plants, etc, I have found that shooting is highly effective, especially if done consistently and repeatedly over the season.  They can also be trapped in a live trap if you are unable to shoot in your neighborhood.  When I lived in town, I would then (very carefully) take them down in the basement and shoot them there.

I am also a big fan of electric fencing.  What makes it impractical for your garden???

Good luck.

troy





Offline BRCincy

  • Prepper
  • **
  • Posts: 21
  • Karma: 0
Re: How to keep Raccoons out of garden, especially Sweet Corn
« Reply #4 on: June 02, 2010, 06:48:25 PM »
Its impracticable from the standpoint of expense for me.  Shooting will work, as will traps.  Unfortunately, they are liable to get in at 3 AM while I'm asleep and not staking out the garden.

Members Support Brigade Member

Offline solarguy

  • Prepper
  • **
  • Posts: 62
  • Karma: 17
Re: How to keep Raccoons out of garden, especially Sweet Corn
« Reply #5 on: June 02, 2010, 10:20:47 PM »
Raccoons are determined opponents, so you will have a hard time getting much corn for yourself if you don't do something about them now.

The shooting plan works best if you shoot and/or trap them now.  Once the corn is almost  ready, you just won't be able to stop them if you have not solved the problem prior to that.

With a modest amount of shopping on ebay, you could put together a decent electric fence for just over or just under a hundred bucks, and your coon worries are over for a decade.

Good luck and let us know how you make out.

HTH,

troy

Offline BRCincy

  • Prepper
  • **
  • Posts: 21
  • Karma: 0
Re: How to keep Raccoons out of garden, especially Sweet Corn
« Reply #6 on: June 03, 2010, 10:00:19 AM »
OK, I am going to look into the electric fence.  What sort of things would I need?
Members Support Brigade Member

Offline gump

  • Fledgling Prepper
  • *
  • Posts: 6
  • Karma: 0
Re: How to keep Raccoons out of garden, especially Sweet Corn
« Reply #7 on: June 07, 2010, 05:41:55 AM »
The Mennonites in my area use large speakers and play hard rock music all night. They say it works great, Of course the corn is pretty remote from anybodies home.

Hare of Caerbannog

  • Guest
Re: How to keep Raccoons out of garden, especially Sweet Corn
« Reply #8 on: June 07, 2010, 07:25:46 AM »
The Mennonites in my area use large speakers and play hard rock music all night. They say it works great, Of course the corn is pretty remote from anybodies home.
That's just the excuse they use to cover up the huge keg parties that go on all night.
Few people know what kind of party animals the Mennonites are when the straw hats come off and the speakers begin to crackle with feedback.
 ;D



Offline sledgehammer

  • Survivor
  • ***
  • Posts: 122
  • Karma: 4
Re: How to keep Raccoons out of garden, especially Sweet Corn
« Reply #9 on: June 09, 2010, 08:02:07 PM »
So far (I've only been here 1.25 growing seasons) I haven't had any problems with warm blooded critters in my gardens. The only things I do is dump dog hair in the garden. I might be getting some bonus from having raised beds, but they are certainly in raccoon range since the beds are still on the ground. I'm sure you know someone with a dog. I know I'd be more than willing to part with a couple brushings worth of dog hair for a pack of Oreos.

Good Luck,

Josh

Offline BatonRouge Bill

  • Survivalist Mentor
  • *****
  • Posts: 514
  • Karma: 14
Re: How to keep Raccoons out of garden, especially Sweet Corn
« Reply #10 on: June 09, 2010, 09:58:20 PM »
A co-worker of mine came to work with the drowzy red eyes doing the coon dog thing to try to protect his neighbors sweet corn. They hit every night except when the dogs were there. They really are some slick little bandits. He lapped the field a couple times with the dogs to pick up a trail and thinks the dogs scent prevented the coons return.
The Purpose of government is to provide service
The Purpose of media is to provide the vasolene.

Offline BRCincy

  • Prepper
  • **
  • Posts: 21
  • Karma: 0
Re: How to keep Raccoons out of garden, especially Sweet Corn
« Reply #11 on: June 14, 2010, 09:10:45 AM »
I actually have a basset hound, but she's an inside dog.  Plenty of dog scent in the yard though, as she does her business all around.  All this, and the garden is inside a 6 ft. high wood fenced back yard.  Spreading dog hair is no problem.
Members Support Brigade Member

Offline solarguy

  • Prepper
  • **
  • Posts: 62
  • Karma: 17
Re: How to keep Raccoons out of garden, especially Sweet Corn
« Reply #12 on: June 16, 2010, 11:53:08 AM »
To do an electric fence, you need:

1.  Wire
2.  Posts
3.  Insulators
4.  The power unit
5.  A gate of some kind
6.  A ground rod

For wire, there are three kinds, braided (or polywire), solid aluminum and solid (zinc plated) steel.  I prefer aluminum, but they all work fine.  I've never used the braided (fabric + fine stainless wires), so I have no idea how you join it or hook your fencer to it.  

For posts, I prefer steel T posts, available at any big box handy/lumber store, couple bucks each.  You can pound them in with a hammer if your ground isn't totally rocky.  For wee little/short fences, they sell wee short little fiberglass poles that are pretty short.  If there are ABSOLUTELY no branches that overhang the fence, these will work fine to keep coons out.  They are very inexpensive and you can basically push it in the ground by hand.  

Insulators, get ones to fit what ever posts you chose.  They are cheaper by the big bag.  Most big box stores carry the ones that fit a T post.  If you already have wooden fence posts, there are special insulators for that too, then you don't even have to buy posts.

If you keep the weeds off your fence (they short it out, so the animal doesn't get much, if any, shock), you don't need a hundred dollar fencer. Here's one for $30 with free shipping:

http://cgi.ebay.com/Zareba-A5-Electric-Fence-Control-5-mile-range-/180521105226?cmd=ViewItem&pt=LH_DefaultDomain_0&hash=item2a07e5774a


You need some kind of gate that you can open that the coons can't crawl over.  You can use special gate hooks so you can open and close the electric fence itself, like here:

http://cgi.ebay.com/Medium-Duty-Gate-Handle-Orange-Electric-Fence-/400080809197?cmd=ViewItem&pt=LH_DefaultDomain_0&hash=item5d26acaced

The ground rod is just a piece of steel rod, usually zinc plated so it won't immediately rust.  Pound in the ground, hook to your grounding post of the power unit.  Any old piece of galvanized pipe would work just as well if you are a scrounger. 

If you do an ebay search for "electric fence" you can educate yourself on about everything you'd need in 20 minutes.



Good luck and keep us posted!

troy

« Last Edit: June 16, 2010, 11:56:09 AM by solarguy »