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Yes, garden vault. I live in the mountains, in a forest, and the forest critters who want to eat my veggies are numerous <img alt="" class="inlineimg" src="/img/vbsmilies/smilies/treehugger.gif" style="border:0px solid;" title="Treehugger">:. I couldn't even keep a container garden on my deck last year from getting eaten. So, DH and I are going to turn a recently-burned portion of our forest lot into a garden vault. We'll be renting an excavator, moving about a foot of dirt out of the way, putting down hardware cloth, and building up from there. The bottom, sides, and top will be hardware cloth. Around 3 sides will be an internal fence so that my chickens will have a place to free-range without being eaten by coyotes.<br><br>
My garden space is roughly 31 x 34 feet. If I take out the space for the chicken run, I can fit four 4'x8' raised beds, two 4'x4' raised beds, and a 15'x15' children's garden, with 3 feet between the fence and beds and between beds.<br><br>
If this were YOUR garden, what would you put in? Take out? Prioritize? <img alt="" class="inlineimg" src="http://www.mothering.com/discussions/images/smilies/love.gif" style="border:0px solid;" title="love">
 

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Sounds like quite an undertaking. I'm not sure if this is what you had planned with your chicken run but i've seen a garden area with two fences around it each about 6 feet high with about 3 feet of space between the fences. Chickens and ducks were between the two fences. You had to open one gate, walk a step or two through the chicken run and through another gate to get into the garden. Aparently the dobble fence is very hard for deer to jump over and the chickens ate any bugs making their way toward the garden.
 

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Yes! that's exactly what I'm planning with the double-fence. I think it will do double-duty: let the chickens free-range and eat bugs without actually being IN the garden, and provide extra defense against the forest critters. Interestingly, I haven't noticed having to worry about deer. My forest enemies <img alt="" class="inlineimg" src="http://www.mothering.com/discussions/images/smilies/orngbiggrin.gif" style="border:0px solid;" title="orange big grin"> include coyote, bobcat, mountain lion, black bear, raccoon, grey squirrel, burrowing squirrel, and chipmunk. They can have all of the forest EXCEPT for my garden <img alt="" class="inlineimg" src="http://www.mothering.com/discussions/images/smilies/winky.gif" style="border:0px solid;" title="Wink">
 

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Wow, I'm not sure what I would have or not have but I am impressed! Will you post pictures when you have it all put together?
 

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MomInFlux wrote:<br><div style="margin:20px;margin-top:5px;">
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<table border="0" cellpadding="6" cellspacing="0" width="99%"><tr><td class="alt2" style="border:1px inset;">coyote, bobcat, mountain lion, black bear,</td>
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<img alt="" class="inlineimg" src="http://www.mothering.com/discussions/images/smilies/scared.gif" style="border:0px solid;" title="scared"><br><br>
Yikes! your garden pests beat mine (groundhogs, raccoons, bunnnies, squirrels, field mice, moles, crows and mocking birds) by a mile! If it were me, I would put everything in there...except garlic and rosemary...those two have been left alone in my yard. And maybe reduce the space in between the beds?...as long as you can fit a wheel barrow along side at least one side of a bed, you will do fine.<br><br>
Good luck!
 

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We had a double fence for chickens at a camp I worked at and the fourth side of the rectangle was their coop and a shelter for the pigs. It was great. I think I'd make the space between the two fences big enough that you could get a mower or *something* between them in case you need to clear things out. We had a lot of thistle and other scary weeds that grew between the fences and the chickens certainly weren't doing anything to help clean it out.<br><br>
Your space sounds wonderful! Good for you for putting so much work into it! Can't wait to see the pictures.
 
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