Little is more discouraging than discovering healthy and recently-planted spring borders and developing vegetable crops damaged or eaten by rabbits; it’s enough to bring the Elmer Fudd out in the mildest of gardeners. Annoyingly rabbits are most active feeders early in morning and at dusk, and so often hard to spot; they also seem attracted to newly-planted areas. But by employing a range of tactics it is possible to reduce problems.
The most effective way to prevent damage is to install a barrier. This will need to be metal such as galvanised wire, as rabbits chew through plastic. Holes in the wire should be no more than 2.5 cm wide- it is surprising how tiny a hole a hungry rabbit- especially a young one- can fit through. For a belt and braces approach, a double slightly staggered layer is best. The barrier needs to be 1.4 m high as rabbits are accomplished at jumping, and it should be buried 15cm deep to prevent burrowing, the bottom of the wire bent away from the fenced area at 90 degrees to stop them pushing under. Secure the fence to the ground with metal staples if rabbits prove determined. Check they are not able to squeeze beneath gates and always make sure these are kept closed by fitting a gate spring. Walk your fence regularly, watching for burrowing and to ensure no animals are trapped. There are three approaches:
Fence the entire garden In a small garden this may be feasible; especially if you can attach wire to the bottom of existing fencing, although make sure all rabbits are clear of the vicinity- it is distinctly counterproductive to be fencing them in! If your boundary is a hedge, this can be hard to rabbit-proof- erect a barrier well within the boundary to bury the base.
Fence vulnerable areas OftenRead more on theenglishgarden.co.uk