how to cover plants from birds

1. Garden netting: Garden netting is light-weight and easy to install. It is recommended to suspend it over your crops. Not only will netting protect against birds, but it is also great at deterring other small animals. Keep the mesh size small, so that birds can not try to squeeze through and injure themselves or get stuck.

2. Soda bottles: Soda bottles are a cheap, easy, and effective way to protect young seedlings from birds, snails, slugs, etc. Just make sure you vent the top, by removing the cap, otherwise, your young tender plants can get too hot and die.

3. Motion activated sprinklers: Highly effective, these motion activated sprinker “scarecrows” will deter more than just birds! Water your garden and keep pests away at the same time.

4. Chicken wire: Chicken wire is cheap and versatile. You may already have a roll laying around that you can cut some small pieces from to protect your newly planted crops. You can also use chicken wire to cover a constructed wood frame that can easily be placed over an entire raised bed.

5. Scare Balloons: Most garden centers carry some type of “scare balloon”. They are generally inflatable mylar balloons with large printed eyes on them. Most have reflective material somewhere on the balloon, and often will have “streamer-like” tails.

6. Electronic scarecrows: While motionless electronic scarecrows can be very effective at chasing away birds, it is recommended to move them often.

7. Garden fleece: Garden fabric helps protect young plants from many things, not just birds! Cover your crops to help protect against light freezes, wind, insects while also providing light shade.

8. Plastic predators (owls and toy snakes): Place plastic snakes and owls in and around your garden space. Often birds flying overhead can’t tell the difference between plastic and the real thing! Move them frequently to keep the birds away.

9. CD’s and mirrors: Birds do not like shiny or weirdly reflective objects. Hanging CD’s can play tricks with the light and cast weird shadows.

10. Bird repellent tape: This works very similar to CD’s or mirrors, but can be easier to work with. Simply cut to your desired length, and tie around objects that need protecting. This can be a very effective tool tied around fruit trees or blueberry bushes.

5 Tips to Protect Your Plants

Bird netting. Although this is the most successful tactic, it can also be complicated. Raise your hand if you have ever used bird netting to cover your veggies only to have it wind up a tangled mess. If so, you are welcome to the club. Therefore, you should plan to build a few hoops from one side of your bed to the other using some cheap PVC pipe, and then cover those with bird netting. When it’s time to harvest, gently raise one side by using landscape pins or wire to secure it into the ground. I realize it’s a little inconvenient, but at least you’ll have harvestable produce.

Mylar balloons. Reflective surveyor’s tape and mylar balloons both produce a flash of light that frightens birds. The idea behind hanging old CDs overhead is the same as well. Plan to move the balloons or tape around every few days to confuse the birds in order to keep this one effective.

Covers. Covers work well for small seedlings (less than 8 inches), but as the plants grow larger, you can use one of these other recommendations. For temporary protection, cover and cut the bottoms of disposable cups or upside-down crates to hold and cover tender seedlings. They’ll still get sun and air circulation.

High-tech fake owls. Although I haven’t personally tried it, I know a lot of other gardeners who have. These imitation owls move—they actually spin—and make noises to frighten away would-be feathered intruders. To keep the birds on their toes, move the faux owl around the garden, just like you would with the mylar balloons.

Fishing line. Nobody really knows why this one works, but it does. If you have a row of seedlings, drive a stake into each end and then, directly above the row of plants, string 20 lb or more of monofilament fishing line from one stake to the other. Birds won’t approach your small vegetables for their midday snack because of something about this fishing line that bothers them.

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2. Soda bottles: Using soda bottles to shield young seedlings from predators like birds, snails, slugs, and so on is inexpensive, simple, and efficient. Just be careful to remove the cap and vent the top to prevent your young, delicate plants from becoming overheated and dying.

1. Garden netting: Garden netting is light-weight and easy to install. It is recommended to suspend it over your crops. Not only does netting provide protection from birds, but it also works well to discourage other small animals. Maintain a small mesh size to prevent birds from trying to squeak through and hurting or becoming stuck.

9. Birds dislike shiny or strangely reflective objects, such as CDs and mirrors. CDs that are hanging can create strange shadows and play tricks with the light.

5. Scare balloons: A variety of “scare balloons” are available at most garden centers. Often, they are large printed eyes on inflatable mylar balloons. Most balloons have some reflective material on them, and their tails frequently resemble streamers.

4. Chicken wire: Chicken wire is cheap and versatile. To safeguard your recently planted crops, you might already have a roll lying around from which you could cut a few small pieces. Moreover, a built-in wood frame that is simple to cover an entire raised bed can be covered with chicken wire.

FAQ

How do I protect my planted seeds from birds?

Just buy a roll of bird netting (or deer netting) and wrap the plants all around. Use tall stakes to create a cage around the plant. Use generous proportions because tomatoes grow very fast and will grow through the mesh, making a mess.

What is the best thing to keep birds away?

Most theories suggest that birds fear their own reflection and avoid landing on or near areas that contain a lot of shiny or reflective light. The shine that bounces off aluminium, old CDs, and reflective tape prevents birds from landing nearby.