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Rabbit proof plants


sueyh
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Can anyone suggest some rabbit proof plants - the bunnies in my garden have even eaten my small holly bush!!  They just love pruning my skimmia, my choisya doesn't stand a chance and almost every one of my Thuja Plicata furs have been nibbled and the roots dug.  All I seem to do is spend my time making little wire cages for the plants.  Before we moved permanently to the house I thought they were lovely "fluffy wuffy bunnies" but now I think they little indeterminate parentage bunnies!

Thanks in advance

Suey

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Did anyone else read the title as "Rabbit proof PANTS"?

Sounds like you need something well spikey round the outside of your beds. Suggestions would include pyracantha, hawthorn, blackthorn many roses (especially rugosa) ,and berberis. All these can be maintained as low hedges usin secateurs and THICK gloves.

Dorset miners used to call them "underground mutton".

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They'll eat just about anything including the compost around the roots.   The only things I know that don't get eaten are daffodils  and  box.  Those wire  protectors  you are making will need to be losened off every few years  otherwise the bark will grow into the wire and the wire will strangle the tree.

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[quote user="tracteurtom"]

You need a gun and a dog. 


[/quote]

Is that me you're talking about? [;-)]

[quote user="sueyh"]

 Before we moved permanently to the house I thought they were lovely "fluffy wuffy bunnies" but now I think they little indeterminate parentage bunnies!

[/quote]

How about thinking of them as Terrine de Lapin! [:D]

 

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I have three dogs, a bitza pedigree heinz 33 varieties, a Border Collie and a Rhodesian Ridgeback - the bunnies just escape through the fence and ignore them!  As for a gun, I think my husband has more chance of shooting himself through the foot!! 

Suey

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Nah, its a terrier that you want, not a toy.  Only joking, BCs are brilliant dogs, but more suited to herding and playing ball than killing.  

I was told that putting human hair around the plants will deter rabbits ??  Never tried it myself but worth a try.  Dog hair could also work ??

Try and improve the fencing, particularly from ground up to 500mm.   Its a big job, but if the problem warrants it, bury chicken wire all around the perimeter fence to a depth of 100 - 150 mm, that'll stop the buggers !

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If you can't bring yourself to kill the rabbits, then what about using a rabbit  cage - which is a trap that does not harm the  animal.  You can then take it somewhere very far away and let it go.  I have found that carrots are the best  food to entice rabbits - honestly!

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[quote user="John Martin BRADLEY"]If you can't bring yourself to kill the rabbits, then what about using a rabbit  cage - which is a trap that does not harm the  animal.  You can then take it somewhere very far away and let it go.  I have found that carrots are the best  food to entice rabbits - honestly!

[/quote]

As I've said before this is a very bad idea and a practice that we hear of all too often, typically from townies who know nowt about the countryside.  My guess is that there is an army of rabbits in this patch.  and rabbits breed like well rabbits !  Moving them far far away will result in their deaths from foxes and roadkill as they try to find their way back home, disorientated, they are weak and exposed.  If they do somehow manage to reestablish themselves they will then be a problem for someone else and be at war with the local rabbit population.  Also mxamatoesis (spelling grr!) is rife in rabbits and you could very easily endanger other rabbits by spreading this diesease unnecessarily.  Very bad plan Mr Bradley [6]  Go and write 100 lines "I am a towny" !

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Actually I am not a townie.  My preferred method for killing rabbits is with Mr Ferret and Reverend Russell.  A shot gun is not a bad tool, but makes them more difficult to skin and a bit crunchy to eat.    

I don't expect people to adopt this approach if they are unaccustomed to the realities of living in the country.  

As for spreading myxo, it is not nice to see any animal suffer in such a way, but it certainly is effective.  

Am no great fan of Mr Fox, but he has to eat too.  Better he eats some disoriented rabbit than my hens.   

I think you should write out "I am a Towny" 100 times as you made a smelling mistake and that is very naughty (oh yes and also because you are rather condescending).

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Last year had one of these cages on our garden for six weeks, did not catch anything!!  Kept moving it around where we could see that the rabbit runs were - NOTHING!  Not one pesky rabbit!  And no we were not going to take the bunny on a holiday jaunt to another part of the country - we were going to give it to our friend to put in a pot!  And yes we do live next to a field with hundreds of the little breeders!

Suey

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[quote user="sueyh"]

Last year had one of these cages on our garden for six weeks, did not catch anything!!  Kept moving it around where we could see that the rabbit runs were - NOTHING!  Not one pesky rabbit!  And no we were not going to take the bunny on a holiday jaunt to another part of the country - we were going to give it to our friend to put in a pot!  And yes we do live next to a field with hundreds of the little breeders!

Suey

[/quote]

Well at least you've got some sense Suey re not relocating it.  It beggers believe just want some people are prepared to do without thinking of the consequences.  

I cant see the point in catching just one if there's a field full next door.  I think the key here is fencing or as your original question asks rabbit proof  plants !  Not a clue on those I'm afraid, except maybe prickly bushes and some rhubarb.  At least if they eat the rhubarb it should reduce the population a bit !! 

It would be worth the trouble having a chat with the local Chasse.  They could arrange a shoot in the field when its hunting time again ?

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Yes thank you Russethouse - useful info as always - will print it off

Bonne weekend

Suey

ps three of the little breeders up the garden this morning - thought they were hares cos they were so huge - its all those shrubs they're eating!!

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