Last fall I started planning/dreaming about a transformation for my herb garden and the creation of a pie garden–both in raised beds just outside the main vegetable garden. This is what those two raised beds looked like last fall:
I’ve been growing herbs in the herb bed for a couple of years. The other bed has a lot of crazy mint in it and I’ve also grown other herbs in there, too, but I want to rededicate it as a “pie” garden where I can plant ground cherries and garden huckleberries. Both of these will go from seed to berry in one season and are great for immediate gratification while I’m waiting for my blueberries and blackberries to get up to speed.
Chickens love to get in the raised beds.
They don’t eat my herbs (though I’m sure they would love to get hold of the ground cherries and garden huckleberries!), but they get in the beds and make a mess. They scooch around and make holes/nests and make nuisances of themselves. And then there are the dogs, too. Last year, in an attempt to keep the chickens and dogs out of the raised beds, this contraption of fencing was draped over the top of the herb bed.
It worked really well!
Or not. Plus, it was a major pain to get it out of the way to harvest herbs. I just got to where I didn’t even want to harvest herbs because it was too difficult. I’m a princess, you know. Don’t make harvesting herbs too hard or I can’t do it!
I came up with a plan to fence in the herb garden, but it wasn’t such a great plan. This weekend, a better plan was devised by 52 and I love it. Here is my new dog-proof herb garden.
I’m calling this dog-proof but not chicken-proof because, of course, the chickens could fly up into it. They can fly higher than the fence. (The fence around the chicken yard is higher than this and they fly out of it when they want to.) However, it’s definitely not chicken-friendly, and the chickens usually need some motivation to bother with the flying thing. Motivation = food. And they don’t want to eat the herbs, they just want to scooch around in the dirt, so I suspect they will go scooch somewhere more chicken-friendly. If not, we’ll do to the herb garden what we’re going to do to the pie garden because they are so totally going to be after those berries. The pie garden will be enclosed in a similar way, with a gate, but it will be fenced higher. If they are still not foiled, fencing will be placed across the top. A band of smaller chicken wire will be wrapped around the pie garden to keep them from poking their heads in there to steal berries, too. When the pie garden is prepared, I’ll post pictures, but for now, back to the herb garden!
The gate is made of, what else, a cut-down pallet.
Would you like to come in?
There are stones to make a path. (Need to find a few more.)
It needs some serious weeding work, but I already have some herbs growing in there as some of the plants carried over or reseeded from last year.
I have enough for a little harvesting and I haven’t even started gardening yet!
And best of all, the chickens are quite stumped.
I’ve always wanted a dedicated herb garden. Now that I also have a protected space for it, I’m going to start working out a little bit of design in the garden. I want it to be not only functional but beautiful. I love designed herb gardens. I’ll post along the way as I work on this project!