Any ideas for useful stuff for a veggie garden that would also help deter trespassers? Ideally for along the boundary.

We have a lovely big patch of land that we plan to turn into a veggie patch. Unfortunately, we've suffered with trespassing & vandalism with much of the work we've done so far. We are lucky enough to have inherited a polytunnel frame (a large hooped structure to be covered with plastic for use as a commercial greenhouse) but our last attempt to get a cover on it ended 10 days later when a knife was taken to it. We also get stones thrown over as well as actual trespassing. We'd like to get cracking again this year (warm weather is best for working with the plastic cover) & are concentrating on getting an earth bank & fence installed beforehand, to minimise any issues. We'll be planting a hedge along the top of the bank, but that will take a while to grow. This work will also involve doing some terracing, so the ground level at the boundary will be about 1-1.5m/3-5ft higher than the main area. It is also on the northern (sunny) edge, and the whole boundary is about 25m/45ft long. We are located out on the west coast of Wales, so have a temperate climate & moderate wind, but can't construct anything that might upset the officials as we're in a National Park. Saying that, the boundary can only be seen from either our land or from our vandals', sorry, neighbours' land. We're not thinking of bear traps or anything, just wondering if anybody has any suggestions for things that would be useful & practical that might also cause an added obstruction. The instructable on the Double-Decker Drum Composter inspired me to think about other possible options, though I'm not sure whether composters would suit the sunny location. Please note that this will be a veggie patch, so nothing that might cause issues with growing and (more importantly) eating our own produce. And no, nothing can be proved but would only cause more hassle even if it could, so we just have to find other, less confrontational, ways to work around these things :) All (sensible) ideas are very welcome!

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Kroner785 years ago
Gooseberries! Brambles and logaqnberries! Goosberries are particularly vicious!
ephelba7 years ago
 Also, what about Geese? They make good guard animals and take very little care, unlike dogs.

ephelba7 years ago
 Have you heard of a scarecrow sprinkler? Here in the states they run about $70.  I'm not sure if you've got water all the way out there, but it might be worth a go while your pricker bushes are growing.
ema328 years ago
Try a pyracantha hedge. The thorns will go through tractor tyres, & they're quite tough plants that will put up with a bit of abuse whilst they establish. We have some around the back of our garden centre at the top of a ditch & no nightly visitors have been through that way! They also have red, yellow or orange berries that the birds like in the autumn, and are evergreen, a good doer in general.
and7barton8 years ago
Perhaps you need to take a stanley knife to your neighbours ? But seriously, I'd personally bank up along the edge to give you a head start of two feet. Allow a depth of say, six feet. then basically throw a load of bramble cuttings down along the strip. Maybe even hammer some poles in and tie the cuttings to them to give you an instant fence. Any part of the bramble that touches the ground will quickly take root. You will end up with an impenetable and nasty barrier to any ingress. You could even thread some barbed wire through the cuttings too in the meantime.
Pumpkin vines could also add spines to the ground, while blackberry or raspberry make passage more difficult above. But if you have people slicing up your greenhouse with a knife, I do not think any kind of planting or terracing is going to protect the garden. You really need to convince the neighbors that you have a right to be there and that trespassing is not a fun challenge. Put up some certification signs from a gardening organization signs and get your garden featured in a local newspaper to establish some legitimacy. Bring the neighbors a pan of brownies to establish some goodwill. Making friends (or at least convincing them that your yard is totally boring) seems to be the best solution. But if not, you may need to see about borrowing a dog.
hv3333 (author) 8 years ago
I hadn't thought of blackberries as we're rather inundated with brambles in the local hedgerows already, but I had been thinking of prickly things for the hedge, including blackthorn (for the sloes, which grow *huge* around here), gorse (which gets covered in little yellow flowers & smells fairly similar to coconut) & dog roses (for the flowers, which are beautiful & smell fantastic, and the hips in the autumn). All of these are local/indigenous plants too.

Maybe I could use some brambles for underplanting, as the other things will quickly get a bit 'leggy' and sparse at the bottom? And having my own bramble hedge would probably mean I don't have to half-climb the tall hedges around our lanes just to reach the lowest fruit.

I'm a dab hand with jam making, so extra fruit always goes down well :)

I was thinking of physical structures, as an extra barrier that they'd have to climb over or get around. Anything to make it too much trouble to be worth bothering with.
hv3333 (author)  hv33338 years ago
The boundary is off camera on the left of the photo, and you can see how great a job we did on the tunnel last time.
CrawdadMan8 years ago
Ohh I forgot to mention they are also magically delicious./
CrawdadMan8 years ago
You could put up blackberry bushes. They be mighty thorny and are sure to deter trespassers.