Thursday, November 10, 2016

Summer 2016: Fallow Field to Currant Field - How to Build a Deer Proof Fence


This is the back portion of the lot. There is an old out building with trees growing through it.  
On the bottom of the hill is where the currant patch is going to be planted.  At this point it is sweet fern, alfalfa and wild growing things I do not recognize.

 Larry began the task of hand mowing the back field, one section at a time.  It took a while, but he kept at it.  By the end of the Summer he was able to use the riding mower to keep it in line.  

The most amazing thing I learned about my handsome distance runner is he has a need for speed.  Do not get in front of him when he is on his riding mower.
The two does and their fawns took advantage of the shorter grasses in the photo below.  I don't know if they sprouted new leaves, or the deer were just interested in something different.

This is the field once Larry had it where he wanted it.  

 During the week, my handsome distance runner would research how to build a fence to keep out deer.  The following photos are what can be accomplished with research, a fence pounder, a 10' ladder, basic tools and the help of a willing son-in-law to get the high stuff attached.
The photo immediately below is fence posts going into the ground using the pure determination of my handsome distance runner.

There is a stack of light colored stuff in front of the fence and on the edge of the sweet fern bed that was not cut down.  It is the carpeting we pulled from the house.  My cousin uses it in her garden to keep down the weeds.  We cut a hole in the middle of each ~ 4'X4' piece of carpeting and a slit to the edge.  This will make them easy to put in place and remove.  We will see how this works out next Summer.  Until Spring the stack will stay where it is.  

Before we cut the carpeting to size it was stored in the garage.  The mice were too eager to use it to store choke cherry pits.  I'm not going to make it easy for them to over Winter next to my currant plants.  

 6' high wire fencing was the bottom row.  By this point the storage unit from the patio had been moved to the fenced in patch. 
 This is where the second row of fencing was put up.  It took my distance runner, son-in-law and myself the day to install.
 There are two sets of gates.  1 for the lawn mower needed to keep the grasses in line and one centrally located for people to use.

 Yes, that is frost on the field.
 The 22nd of October the currant plants that had been growing in our West Allis yard were re-located to Wausaukee.  The prepared holes were bastard trenched and amended with aged manure provided by my sister's horse.  

It took me a month to prepare the 99 planting holes.  It took us 3 hours to plant the nursery stock.  

There is an abundance of the variety Red Lake, so alternate rows are Red Lake.  The other rows are started with Consort, Ben Sarek, Pink Champagne, Rovada Red (tastes the most like the currants my grandma grew) and Jonkur Van-Tets.  I took cuttings from these varieties to fill in the rows.

We took a trip to Channing in July to retrieve cuttings from the currant bush in Aunt Mary's yard.  There is a full row cuttings that I have named 'Mary Rassmussen' variety.  Now let's hope they are edible.

The doe in the photos below took her time one day nudging the bottom of the fencing over the entire perimeter of the patch.  In the two weeks since, my handsome distance runner has shored up the fence and added a couple rows of barbed wire to the bend in the fence pole.

The one concern we have is the bears in the area.  Neighbors on either side of us have seen them walking along the tree line on the other side of the berry patch.  Providing a source of food for the bears is discouraged.  Bears that are used to people are dangerous to have around.  If they become a nuisance, we will have to invest in a second fence and electrify it. We will see how the bears are next summer when the larger currant bushes produce berries.

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