Despite a nice fence, we have a lot of deer, rabbits and other animals that wander through our yard grazing on all vegetation - including any attempt I make at a vegetable garden. I thought about putting up 6-8 foot fences to keep the animals out. Setting aside the eyesore this would create, I thought this would be more time and money than I was willing to take on. Instead I decided to construct a closed-in structure that allowed in rain and sun, but not animals. I also wanted to make sure this small garden would be easy to weed and maintain.
Overall, I was able to complete this project in a weekend and I am very satisfied with the results.
Motivation for the design came from community garden just down the road. They used an old plexiglass door to make a small greenhouse of similar shape. Instead of a plexiglass door, I purchased a screen door from a the local Habitat Re-sale store for about $20. The following is a list of materials you would need to build your own:
1 - 6' Reused screen door (preferably with the hinge still attached).
2 - 10' 6x6" wood posts**
2 - 7' 2x4" wood studs
3 - 7' 2x6" wood panels**. I had leftover wood from a previous garden box that failed to keep out anything.
1 - 4x8' decorative lattice panel for the back.
1 - box of carpentry screws (I used 2" drywall screws, but I would recommend the better stainless steel kind).
1 - Roll of chicken wire
** NOTE: In earlier versions of this instructable I recommended treated wood (to avoid rot) even though my garden fortress was built with untreated wood. However, a user comment (see below) from defwheezer suggested that treated wood may be a problem in contaminating the soil. I think defweezer presented a resonable argument against treated wood and it is better to air on the side of caution and use untreated wood.
Tools you need include the following: