Green Room: Keeping Critters Out with a Stylish Garden House
Atlanta gardener Carmen Collins had a critter problem in her backyard garden. She didn't always see the offender, but found the evidence: nibbled fruit and veggies.
Keeping critters out of the garden is a tough task, for sure. A screen simply placed over her raised beds wouldn't do. Carmen wanted a productive garden, and a way of protecting her garden that would be both beautiful and functional. Her solution needed to be a centerpiece for entertaining and a place she could enjoy her favorite pastime.
She calls her remedy for garden pests a "critter screen house." Take a look:
An Enclosed Garden
Atlanta gardener Carmen Collins had a critter problem in her backyard garden. She wanted to grow more, but squirrels and other garden pests kept making a mess. So, to keep the garden pests out, she came up with a design that enclosed her entire garden — raised beds and all — and hired friend Keenan Phillips to build it. Then, as the following photos show, she made it look less like a critter barrier and more like a place to celebrate her favorite pastime.
Cracks are Sealed on Screen House Door
Squirrels and other four-legged garden pests can squeeze through tiny cracks. To keep them away from her veggies in the screen room, Carmen stapled vertical strips of quarter-inch flexible hardware cloth on the inside of the screen room, between the door frame and the door.
Strawberries Grown Inside Screened Garden
Mounted to the inside of the screen room walls are terraced planters for strawberries. Slow-drip irrigation hoses line the planters and spray irrigation nozzles are mounted to the screen room's wall studs. A layer of pea gravel finishes the floor of the screen room.