Effective ways to protect apple trees in winter from hares, mice and other rodents
Small fur-bearing animals and rodents quite often become a real threat to the home garden in the winter. In search of food, they often wander into summer cottages and inflict irreparable harm to plantations, and in some cases even lead to the death of trees. This article will examine in detail what dangerous hares and small rodents are for the apple tree, and how to properly protect the garden from these pests.
What is the danger of hares and other rodents in the garden
Small animals are a real gardener problem. The reason for this is most often a sharp decrease in feed reserves. In search of food, animals without fear wander into the cottage area, where they are waiting for an abundance of all kinds of fruit trees.
Did you know? Unlike conventional wisdom, hares are not exclusively herbivores. They can readily eat animal food, including meat.
In times of food shortages, young branches, seedlings, and tree bark become the main food supply for hares and rodents. As a result of this, only one patron of the site can completely destroy the apple orchard.
Left without bark, both young and adult trees dry out and freeze in just a few days in the conditions of winter cold. As a result, the painstaking work of the gardener is nullified, and restoration of former plantings often requires more than one summer season.
What are the signs of rodent damage to a tree
All kinds of pests in the garden appear suddenly and are activated only at night, so it is possible to identify the danger on the site only after some of the plantings have already been damaged or even died. This is a real problem for the gardener, since it is not easy to save a damaged garden. That is why every gardener should definitely familiarize themselves with the first signs of a pest attack.
Important! Moles and shrews are not dangerous for the apple tree. They are predators, therefore they feed exclusively on small insects and earthworms.
About the visits of hares to the site says the following:
- shoots of young trees are completely destroyed, to the base;
- seedlings up to 1 year old are destroyed at the root;
- the bark of adult trees at an altitude of 1 m above the soil is partially or completely destroyed;
- pits and undermines appeared on the ground, especially near large apple trees;
- characteristic waste products of animals near plantations are noticeable.
The same signs may indicate the appearance in the garden of water and wild rats, as well as beavers. At the same time, visits of the latter can cause serious damage to the trunk, since animals can often completely bite the trunk or thick branches. Mice and other smaller pests are more difficult to detect.
The first thing you should pay attention to is the complex of rounded holes in the soil in which they live or hide from danger. Their appearance is also indicated by bare roots (located on the surface of the soil) or the root part of the stem of the apple tree. If rodents appeared in the warm season, then on the site there will be a defeat in the crop of root crops and other vegetables.
How to protect the garden from the appearance of hares and mice
Not many people know how to save the garden from rodents and hares and prevent their appearance. However, often these measures provide for the observance of simple, but rather important rules for growing an apple tree in a garden. These include, first of all, timely cleaning of the garden, as well as other agricultural techniques, including soil care.
Restoring order in the garden perfectly helps to avoid the appearance of hares or rodents. These animals are afraid of open areas, so cleaning up excess garbage creates a psychological barrier for them to populate the site. To do this, you only need to clean the leaves and other residues of vegetation on time, which become the main refuge of pests.
Digging a garden
Loosening the soil in the garden is also considered a fairly simple, but effective method to prevent the appearance of rodents and hares on the site. With careful digging of the soil to a depth of 35–40 cm, mouse holes can be completely blocked, which will surely destroy all chances of animals for intensive reproduction. In addition, loosening creates unfavorable conditions for the excavation of the site with hares.
How to protect a young apple tree from rodents in winter
Protecting the apple orchard in winter is considered a rather time-consuming procedure. In this unfavorable period of the year, it is especially difficult to identify traces of the spread of pests, as well as take preventive measures. In addition, often with damage to the apple tree in the winter, it is not possible to save the plant.
Fencing and winding
The fence of the apple tree is considered one of the most common and proven ways to protect. With its help, it is possible to prevent tree damage with practically minimal costs. The most common fence is a fine mesh metal mesh.
It is dug deep into the soil in the near-stem circle. At the same time, they use the proven rule: the smaller the cell size, the less chance of damage to the apple tree by pests.
An alternative to the fence is a dense winding of the apple tree. To do this, spruce branches are considered the most effective material, which completely cover the trunk, up to the first tier of branches.
You can replace them with any dense material of artificial or natural origin. Most often, dense burlap, kapron fabric, parchment paper, etc. are used for this. If there is a body of water in the immediate vicinity of the site, reeds can be used.
As an alternative, plastic bottles are acceptable. From them create hollow cylinders with a longitudinal section on one of the sides, which are worn on a tree trunk. However, in this case, the plastic should not fit snugly against the bark, otherwise the plant tissue will be blocked.
Wrap up the bark before the onset of frost, otherwise the procedure can become completely useless. The most acceptable period for this is considered to be the end of leaf fall.
Since hares and other small pests are rather shy, you can cope with them using deterrents not only quickly, but also for a long time. The simplest of them are narrow ribbons of foil or carbon paper, about 15–20 cm long. They are tied to branches around the entire perimeter of the crown. In the wind, they will create an unpleasant, scaring noise.
As a sound repeller, empty glass bottles can also be used. Several containers must be fixed around the perimeter of the site, at an angle of 45 ° (neck up). To do this, the bottles can be tied to pegs or just dug in the soil. The wind passing by the tanks will create an unpleasant hum, which will also help drive moles out of the garden.
Coating and spraying
All kinds of chemicals today are considered the most effective ways to scare away hares, mice and other pests. Chemicals with a pungent odor are considered the most popular. Preparations are sprayed over the entire surface of the trunk, as well as on the lower tier of the branches. Replace expensive foreign drugs can be with natural plaster, prepared independently.
Important! Trees should be treated before the onset of winter, since such procedures in the cold will affect them negatively.
The following recipes are considered the most effective:
- equal parts of clay and thick cow manure are mixed and bred to a thick sour cream, 1 tbsp of such a product is added. l carbolic acid;
- a mixture of 4 kg of manure, 100 g of creolin and 90 g of malathion must be diluted with water to a thick but uniform state;
- 1 liter of vegetable oil and diesel fuel, 170 g of soap, 150 g of naphthalene and 50 g of copper sulfate should be dissolved in 50 l of water;
- 1 l of denatured alcohol should be thoroughly mixed with 800 g of crushed rosin.
Bait is considered an extreme measure of the fight against rodents and hares, therefore, they are used only if other attempts have not brought the desired result. They are bait small trays with poisoned food, after eating which pests die. Often they look like a variety of compacted tablets with a rich aroma, but can also be in friable form.
Set the bait around the entire perimeter of the site, as well as around the apple tree. At the same time, the movement of pets should be limited in the garden, otherwise they can also be affected. Poisoned feeds act for a long time, however, periodically, the bait needs to be updated.
In recent years, ultrasonic repellers have gained immense popularity. They create an unpleasant high-frequency sound (from 18 to 24 kHz), safe for humans and most pets. Even the simplest installation allows you to create a protection zone with an area of about 100 m².
The most advanced models are equipped with a motion sensor, with which the device is turned on only in case of unauthorized entry of pests. Such devices are installed directly on the site, on an elongated peg or at the nearest garden building.
There are a lot of folk remedies for protecting the apple tree from hares and rodents. Usually they involve the use of substances with a pungent and persistent smell. Their main advantage is the lack of direct contact with the apple tree, which allows protective procedures to be carried out systematically.
The most effective among them are the following:
- Black pepper - the product has a very pungent odor that repels pests. It is scattered around the perimeter of the entire site.
- Naphthalene - The smell of this substance is very saturated and does not like hares and rodents. Naphthalene tablets are placed throughout the site, as well as near the apple tree itself.
- Fish fat - One of the best alternatives to naphthalene. The product is impregnated with cotton swabs, which are fixed on pegs installed in the trunk circle or around the perimeter of the garden.
Did you know? The apple tree was domesticated by humans about 7 thousand years ago. Thus, this is one of the oldest cultivated plants, which today has more than 7.5 thousand of all kinds of varieties.
Methods for treating rodent damaged trees
If it was not possible to prevent damage to the apple tree, and part of the bark was destroyed, you should immediately resort to saving the tree. In just a few days, it can dry out or become infected with fungal infections.
First of all, the damaged area must be treated with garden varieties or a creamy mixture of equal parts of clay and cow manure. You can replace them with special tools from garden stores. They are no less effective, but will cost several times more.Handling Damages with a Garden Var After this, the damaged parts should be tightly wrapped in burlap, capron, hay or straw. After a dense crust appears on the damaged part, shelter can be removed from the trunk. At the same time, it is forbidden to remove the coating, it must be removed independently, in a natural way (by rain or wind).
Video: How to save an apple tree after damage by rodents
Hares and rodents on the site - this is a real disaster for the gardener, especially in the winter.In just a few weeks, they can completely destroy the apple orchard, so the protection of trees should be taken responsibly. For this, there are many various methods and tools, but it is best to approach the procedure comprehensively, applying several of them at once.