[nafex] voles & carpet mat experiment results

dwalsh/wchase wchase at interchange.ubc.ca
Tue Nov 6 12:05:53 EST 2001


Another disadvantage of putting carpetting down permanently is that you provide
winter protection for voles.  They will nest under the carpetting and eat the
roots of your tree as an appetizer.

I used empty (paper) Feed bags. I cut them open and laid them down one side of my
row of apple tree.  They were successful at keeping down the weeds, they did allow
moisture to penetrate (but I left the other side of the tree uncovered in case
they were blocking the moisture).  These only lasted one season and needed
grapefruit sized rocks on the corners to hold them down against the wind.  I
pulled them all up yesterday and sent them to the 'dump'.

Actually what happened is that the area under the rocks deteriorated so there was
nothing holding the paper in place and each windstorm some of the bags blew around
the orchard.

I'll put down more next year, ideally before the weeds start to grow.  Also, after
I have dolomite limed.

I noticed yesterday that the meadow mice had made tunnels under the paper bags.


Derry Walsh & Bill Chase  email:  wchase at interchange.ubc.ca
Aldergrove,  B. C.,  Canada
phone/fax (604) 856-9316
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Home web page  http://www.interchange.ubc.ca/wchase/HTML
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: As I was tending to my screening this year I also pulled up the 4' salvaged
: carpet squares (tree matts), and will stack them for the winter as a vole
: deterrant. This is a 3 year old experiment. The results are.....

: 5. They have made a weed free 4' square for my new trees
: 6. Its advantage over other matting is its weight...wind doesn't move it;
: water passes through it; and the price is right.
: 7. The disadvantage is putting it down permanantly (or using cheap stuff)
: which will deteriorate...causing a nightmare for mowing, weed whippng,
: rorotilling.   Mn. Del

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