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  • Subject: [cg] Fences
  • From: Wintergarden wintergarden@gci.net
  • Date: Thu, 22 May 2003 20:48:20 -0800

Paul, I can sympathize with the fence dilemma.  The biggest troubles at our garden have been moose and vandalism.  There is nothing more discouraging than spending months growing a prize winning pumpkin or even worse, your family's food, only to arrive at your garden and see carrots and tomatoes thrown about and the pumpkin dashed to pieces.  I would much rather feed a mama moose than provide ammunition for a midnight tomato war.  We began to spend way too much energy on fighting off the moose and vandals.  Gardeners were getting so discouraged.  So we bit the bullet and built an 8 foot fence (moose can really jump!) with barb wire on top.  We cobbled together high gates and bought new locks.  It is a shame that we had to do this but we post the site coordinator's phone number on the gate and try to do a lot of Public Service Announcements so people know we are here and they can join us.  We also have a garden host,(our zucchini police!) similar to those camp ground hosts you see in state parks.  They park a motorhome and live at the garden.  Gardeners feel safer, their produce is much safer and we have fewer vandalism problems.  We tried many things before we got to this point.  We tried gardening with the children in the neighborhood, giving them a garden and some help and seeds and starts.  (They brought their friends who stole our produce and vandalized the tool shed).  We tried bear hides and skulls to scare away the moose and gross out the vandals, planted raspberries around the perimeter of the garden, solicited a volunteer host, joined the Volunteers in Policing.  The police even put us on their rounds but to no avail.  Good fences make good neighbors.  The gardeners are happy and the drug dealers and their children aren't bothered by ranting gardeners complaining about missing cabbages.   Good luck in your garden,  Wendy Anderson,  Fairbanks Community Garden www.home.gci.net/~fairbankscommunitygarden

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