Last year was the first for our blueberry bushes to produce, and we were thrilled when the first bush blossomed and even more so when the blueberries started to ripen.
Apparently the birds were just as excited, and they got more of our blueberries than we did; not the desired outcome for our garden. We tried draping a net over the bushes and holding the bottom edges down with rocks, but somehow the birds figured out that maze and got inside. We ended up with just two handfuls of blueberries and decided that we needed to come up with a better blueberry cage.
As soon as the blueberries blossomed this year, Michael set out to animal-proof our blueberries with a cage design he created. We can’t say it’s pretty to look at, but it’s very effective at keeping the wildlife out of our precious berries, and we can easily take it down after the blueberries are done this summer.
He used pvc pipe and chicken wire, overlapping the chicken wire and securing it to the pipe with zip fasteners. The two back pipes are secured to the rail behind it to keep the cage steady. He also curved the bottom edge of the chicken wire and placed rocks on top to hold them down. In the middle of the cage is a point of entry. The chicken wire overlaps in that section and Michael wove pieces of 9-gauge wire through it and drove it into the ground. To enter the cage, we just slide out the two pieces of holding wire and lift back the chicken wire.
Michael’s cage did a great job of protecting our plants, and we harvested our first pound of fresh blueberries this weekend. The boys were delighted and dove right in, and the birds just sat on top of the cage, staring at the sweet berries below. I have a feeling they are plotting against us.