Asica
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Raccoon getting into my veggie garden

I have written about it before and got some great advise.
Today, I met the three raccoons that were visiting me. It was not a pleasant visit. Their reaction to my child's scream and cry was slowly walk away. But I saw how they get to the yard. So I live in La and we have tall fences between each other. On both sides of my back yard is vinnal fence, that is hard for animals to climb. I can see from the foot prints, they do not like using it. But the back fence has lattice against it. This is what they use to come in. Plus the lattice is against concrete fence so it is easy to walk on top. Now since I know how they get in and dig in my keyhole garden for grubs, I want to find a way to block they way in. The lattice is vinnal but has nice small openings between them, perfect for climbing. I was thinking to put on small sticking out wire on top of the lattice, something sharp. Also spray the whole concrete fence with pepper mixture spray that I know raccoons do not like. What do you think about my plan?
I was thinking about taking lattice off, but it is not an easy task. Plus, my plants use the lattice.

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rainbowgardener
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Re: Raccoon getting into my veggie garden

Every time someone here asks about critter problems, they will get a couple people telling them "just shoot the varmints." Assuming that that is neither practical nor desirable for many of us, I think you really do need to take the lattice down. No point in putting up a nice ladder with a welcome sign on it! You can put some trellis or something up on the inside, that isn't against the fence and isn't so easy to climb, for your plants.

Next question is do you really have to keep them out? Eating grubs out of your compost pile doesn't sound so bad. I had lots of raccoons where I used to live. I learned to keep my compost pile well caged with a lid over it. Not only would the raccoons eat all the kitchen scraps out of it, they would spread it all around and make a big mess. Other than that, I fenced in the stuff they like most, like tomatoes and corn. Since I grow in raised beds, it was easy to fence in individual beds with deer netting. Although raccoons can eat pretty much anything, they never really bothered my greens.
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sweetiepie
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Re: Raccoon getting into my veggie garden

I live on a farm, so I have no idea if it is allowed but I use an electric fence around my 6 ft garden fence (for deer) to keep out the raccoons. It works well. I haven't had any luck with pepper spray. They will dig under fences too.

I am sorry you are having trouble. Raccoons cause so much destruction in my garden if I let them.

The garlic man
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Re: Raccoon getting into my veggie garden

sweetiepie wrote:I live on a farm, so I have no idea if it is allowed but I use an electric fence around my 6 ft garden fence (for deer) to keep out the raccoons. It works well. I haven't had any luck with pepper spray. They will dig under fences too.

I am sorry you are having trouble. Raccoons cause so much destruction in my garden if I let them.
^^^+1 If this indeed becomes a serious problem, then yes, your best bet is a simple electric fence. (Some are made of a wire netting material.)

Here in the upper Midwest some live trap them and "take them for a long ride" to the country...However, those who go this route should have a good understanding of what they are getting themselves into and the unpredictability of a trapped wild animal.
These are not passive rabbits! Best of Luck!

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ccar2000
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Re: Raccoon getting into my veggie garden

Havahart Trap and relocate, do be careful not to get bit or scratched. An electric fence may not be a good option with children around.
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applestar
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Re: Raccoon getting into my veggie garden

I bought a small battery operated electric fence kit to protect one of my apple trees from groundHOG predation. I put two wires a few inches in front of a 28" rabbit fence -- one near the ground and another near the top. This made it likely for the animals to touch either the bottom or the top wire. It worked well against the groundHOG and I saw a squirrel that thought it would jump up touch the top wire, get zapped, and do a back flip and run away (i.e. not fatal).

I've heard that raccoon's hands are sensitive -- and they learn -- so it might be effective in training them not to climb your fence. It's easy to set up and also easy to re-locate.

My two DDs were little at the time, but it was not a problem to teach them not to touch those wires and I made sure to post warning signs as well as inform the neighbors where one part of the wires had to be secured on a property boundary fence.
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jal_ut
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Re: Raccoon getting into my veggie garden

Look up: Conibear Trap.
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The garlic man
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Re: Raccoon getting into my veggie garden

jal_ut wrote:Look up: Conibear Trap.
jal_ut, we used these as kids many years ago. One should have some experience with them and you need to be very careful around pets and kids. (You don't want to catch/ kill the neighbors cat in one.) :eek: Or maybe you do. :twisted:

Also, I'm not sure if this would be legal in most (urban) areas??? (Outside of the legal trapping season?)

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sweetiepie
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Re: Raccoon getting into my veggie garden

Just remember if you relocate an animal, you are dumping your problem on someone else.

ButterflyLady29
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Re: Raccoon getting into my veggie garden

Relocation is illegal in many areas. In Ohio you are legally permitted ONLY to release on the same property where they are trapped or euthanize the animal. Once you trap a raccoon and release it, the chances of it ever being trapped again are very very small. Raccoons are extremely smart and remember a lot of things. We had one in a trap once and it escaped (cheap Chinese Hav-a-hart knockoff trap). She avoided our yard for a long time after until her flock of offspring wandered in. One of them didn't listen when mama told them to stay away and follow her. It was pretty sad, watching the video later. Mama was gone but the siblings kept coming back until morning. We know which raccoon she is, she has only 1 eye. In fact, all raccoons avoided our yard for months after.

We do what we have to when we trap a raccoon. I don't like doing it but they breed like crazy and the only predator they have here is cars. The local coyotes are too full of wandering cats to try tackling raccoons.

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lakngulf
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Re: Raccoon getting into my veggie garden

I use corrugated tin all around my garden, with two strands of electric fence on top of that. Last year was first contest and it worked great

https://i.imgur.com/yH8nVWN.jpg
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Asica
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Re: Raccoon getting into my veggie garden

Thank you all for all the replies. I guess you guys did not like my idea of wires on a lattice. Lol
A Bougainvillea is growing on the lattice and I am hoping once it fills in all the lattice, raccoons or sure will not like climb there. I have to check if I can use electric fence. I have neighbors 10 feet away from me. It is a garden in a middle of the big city after all. I guess, my first step would be to get rid of those grubs. Show raccoons there is nothing to eat. Maybe a electric fence around my keyhole garden would be a good option too. I know that there is only one area of the fence that they use to get down to my yard. What if I set something on a ground that they do not like in that spot?

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jal_ut
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Re: Raccoon getting into my veggie garden

There are also foot traps available, and live traps. I don't know if you are even interested in trapping the critter?
I was having problems with skunks and raccoons eating my corn. I set a radio in my corn patch tuned to the local talk radio station and let it run all the time. It seems to discourage the critters.

Electric fence chargers are good to repel all size of critters if you can set it up such that the critters will touch the hot wire. The hot wire is hung on insulators and does not touch anything grounded.
Gardening at 5000 feet elevation, zone 4/5 Northern Utah, Frost free from May 25 to September 8 +/-

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jal_ut
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Re: Raccoon getting into my veggie garden

When I lived on the lot out on the river, the darned raccoons and deer would come up along the river then out into the garden. I staked down a cable, it was on the ground with a pulley on it and a short chain, then tied a hound dog to the chain and put his house on one end. He had the run of the length of the garden. He pretty well kept the critters out.
Gardening at 5000 feet elevation, zone 4/5 Northern Utah, Frost free from May 25 to September 8 +/-

john gault
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Re: Raccoon getting into my veggie garden

This is a topic that has me a little confused. I have nightly visits by both raccoons and possums, but I've never noticed any stealing of my tomatoes, cucumbers or any of the other veggies in my garden. I'm not sure why, but I do wonder if it's because they are so occupied with digging up grubs -- I'm always seeing their holes left behind. My yard is much like a forest floor with all the mulch and some large trees on the west side, so I do wonder if that keeps them satisfied.

I hope I didn't jinx myself by posting here :mrgreen:

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jal_ut
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Re: Raccoon getting into my veggie garden

The corn is the one the raccoons really got after. Between raccoons and skunks they would strip a corn patch completely if you didn't get after them.
Gardening at 5000 feet elevation, zone 4/5 Northern Utah, Frost free from May 25 to September 8 +/-

ButterflyLady29
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Re: Raccoon getting into my veggie garden

IME, raccoons won't touch tomatoes or cucumbers. But groundhogs are another story. Groundhogs will eat tomatoes and cucumbers, so will chipmunks and squirrels. Corn is the crop raccoons can't pass up. They don't seem to bother popcorn near as much but will totally devastate a sweet corn patch.

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rainbowgardener
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Re: Raccoon getting into my veggie garden

I agree about the corn. One place where I lived with lots of critters around and no fencing, I gave up on growing corn. EVERYONE loves corn - raccoons, groundhogs, birds, deer, all kinds of different rodents ....

It's interesting how people's experiences are different re what the raccoons eat or not. Before we moved, I lived in the city with lots of raccoons and groundhogs and occasional deer. If the deer came and everything wasn't fenced in, they would strip every tomato off, neatly, so you wouldn't know there had been tomatoes on the plants, but not bother the plants much. If the raccoons could get to the tomatoes, they would eat a bunch of tomatoes, but leave pieces behind. They would climb around on the plants and break pieces off and generally trash the place. Squirrels would just take one bite each out of a whole bunch of tomatoes to get the juice. Groundhogs didn't seem particularly fond of tomatoes but would nibble a lot of greens or broccoli down from the top until there was just a little stem nub sticking up.

I wasn't growing corn then and I've never grown cucumbers, so can't speak to that.

I've been putting deer netting and bunny fencing back up, not because we have critters here, but because our newer, younger dog LOVES to dig. Every time I plant something, she digs the bed all up again, because she especially likes to dig the nice soft ground. So I'm back to fencing in beds. :evil: I'll post a couple pictures soon of what that looks like.
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rainbowgardener
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Re: Raccoon getting into my veggie garden

deer netting attached to metal stakes

Image

wire rabbit fencing attached to the same kind of metal stakes

Image

Image

They sell those stakes at all the Home Depot type stores, pretty cheap. They have hooks on them to hang the wire/ netting from and come in various lengths. They have phlanges at the bottom to aid in stepping them into the ground.

I don't love the look. Eventually I would like to fence that whole garden area in with some nice fencing, white picket fence or something, and a real gate. But that would be some hundreds of dollars. I would need ten fence posts, 80' of fencing, and the gate. In the meantime, this keeps the d***ned dog out of the garden beds. And a lot of it I had lying around already. When I lived where there were raccoons and woodchucks and deer, etc. I always fenced in beds like this. The netting works just fine to keep critters out, though sometimes I had to pull some over the top of tomato beds to keep the raccoons out. And it is very cheap and easy.
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