Wednesday, July 14, 2010

Squirrel Cages

It has been so long since I posted that you might be asking yourself, "What has Shaela been up to?" Well, here it is!

I built a squirrel cage!

I used a bunch of wooden bed slats people have given us to make the frame, then painted it with a small can of outdoor paint from Community Forklift ($1!!!). Then I dug it a couple inches into the ground and surrounded it with "river pebbles" leftover from another project. Next, I stapled several random pieces of chicken wire (and one new roll), and wove them together on three sides with wire.

Finally, N helped me fashion a door. There are two overlapping horizontal pieces of chicken wire on this side. The bottom one is stapled at the bottom and sides. The top one is stapled on top, and held in place on the side by nails. The nails hold it taut, but don't actually attach to it very securely, which I have to rectify soon. The bottom of the top piece chicken wire is wrapped around a long bamboo pole, which is affixed to the bottom piece of chicken wire with scraps of wood leftover from N's recent woodworking projects.

Will it keep out a determined squirrel? No.
Will it keep out a lazy squirrel? Maybe.

Last year I noticed that there are a lot of houses in my neighborhood with tomatoes growing openly in their yard, undisturbed by squirrels. One was right across the street, and the squirrels wouldn't run over there to get her tomatoes when they could eat mine! I'm hoping that maybe the difference in my yard last year was that my tomatoes matured early and two or three squirrels moved in. This year my tomatoes are running a little late because of the trouble I had when they were seedlings, and recently I've noticed I just don't see squirrels as often as I used to. Keep your fingers crossed that my thieves moved on when I ran out of sunflowers!

ETA: I left the cherry tomatoes out in the open because it didn't seem like the squirrels bothered with those last year. Hopefully it wasn't just because I had so many nice big tomatoes around that they didn't want to bother.


  1. I sure hope this solves your problems! It's so frustrating to have product stolen away by the squirrels.

    And Community Forklift is terrific! Thanks again for telling us about it.

  2. I hope it works, too. Unfortunately my most productive plant is in a pot, outside of the cage, and has already lost a tomato, I think. I'm going to consider that one to be the squirrels' plant.