[NAFEX] prep for winter-- deer,voles, freezing
tanistanis at hotmail.com
Mon Sep 27 16:29:05 EDT 2004
my 2 cents (or 3)
Just about any wire wrap prevents damage from antlers. At least, 'my' deer
herd seems to prefer a smooth unobstructed length of trunk to destroy. And
yes you must protect trunks earlier in the season than you'd think. I've
been able to reduce brouse damage to almost zero (except for most extreme
hunger pressure) with 4-5' high woven wire pieces in 3-5' diameter rings.
Deer have trouble figuring out they CAN reach over these. Also, the area
thus 'fenced in' is too small for them to leap into.
I like the idea of discarded wire window screen wrapped around base of tree.
I use foil-- always available-- but this invites problems from the wrapped
portion being always damp (insects, disease, and some rootstocks want to
grow roots there!) I have moles too, which loosen orchard soil including
under trees, and then at freeze-up the voles move in to feed on flares/roots
all winter. So I make a couple rounds to gently pack or settle the mole
tunnels around the tree bases. This wouldn't be practical for a commercial
We recently had an open winter after a drought year, and the ground froze to
deeper than usual, and got colder than normal. I don't think watering &
mulching could have been accomplished on any but the smallest scale to save
anything from this punishment.
----Original Message Follows----
From: RW Spalinger <>
Subject: Re: [NAFEX] How to prep trees and bushes for winter
Date: Mon, 27 Sep 2004 11:52:58 -0500
On Sep 24, 2004, at 7:30 AM, Martha Barrett / Scott Weber wrote:
>Two things come to mind for the trees. First, make certain that the deer
>can't get to the trees now, or the bucks will be tearing up the bark
>polishing their antlers. Second, definately put hardware cloth or
>something around to keep the voles from girdling them...
I agree with and emphasize the first point particularly about the deer. The
males will destroy an orchard - tree by tree, as they move through scraping
their antlers on the trunks and through the branches.
Using some heavy gauge 2"X 4" fencing material, 4 feet high circling the
trees, about a foot or so from the trunk will keep them from savaging the
trunks. A five foot section of rebar anchoring the fence material to the
ground will keep the little fence from being pushed onto the trunk.
Where I am, SE Texas, zone 9, we don't have voles, but we do have a healthy
gopher population to deal with. Gophers like to eat tree roots and dig the
dirt out from under trees to make their nests.
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