garden bird nettingTomatoes are one of the most common plants growing in the typical backyard garden.  There is no tomato you can buy that tastes better than a home grown, vine ripened sweet tomato.  They are challenging to grow but when done effectively, the outcome can be very fruitful.  There are many tips on how to best grow this popular plant.  Starting at the top, tomatoes need lots of light.  Sunshine is a needed element to a healthy plant.   Plant them in the sunniest part of the garden.  Many gardeners have invested both time and money only to find their precious tomato plants enjoyed by the birds.  Pest birds are not needed in the garden.  How do we live harmoniously with these pests?  What would an effective bird control product entail to protect the tomatoes and other garden plants? 

Garden Bird Netting

One solution would be a physical bird deterrent like bird netting.  The bird netting acts as a barrier between your tomato plants and the pest bird.  Blocking the pest bird from the tomatoes is not hurting the bird or environment; it is simply encouraging the nuisance birds to find another place as their food source.   Garden netting is strong and made of light-weight plastic mesh making for an easy installation.  It comes in foot bulk rolls of 14’ by 100’ and 14’ by 200’.  Ordinary scissors are used to cut and trip to the exact size and shape that is needed.  There are three different mesh sizes.  For small birds it is recommended you use 14/” garden netting.  For average size birds the ½” mesh would work.

The UV-protected polypropylene material that the mesh is made of is specially designed to endure winter’s rain and the hot days of summer.  It is environmentally friendly and made from FDA sanctioned resin.  When installed correctly, it is almost invisible.  It blends in with the plants, bushes and trees. 

A novice backyard gardener can easily install garden bird netting to protect the tomato plants and the entire garden.  Whether you are having problems with the smaller sparrow and the big black crow you will be covered with the various mesh sizes.  More than likely you are growing various fruit and vegetable plants along with the tomatoes, and the bird netting will deter the bird from those plants and trees as well. 

Suspending the netting over the entire garden area is most effective.  Suspend the netting over the plants by at least 6 inches.  This will prevent the birds from sitting on the netting and eating the fruit  beyond the mesh.

All birds have some positive component to our environment.  We do not have to give them free reign in our back yard gardens, however.  There are plenty of backyards that house birdhouses and bird baths to attract the birds.  There is no reason to feel badly about getting rid of the backyard pest bird.  They are resourceful creatures and will find food and water without difficulty.  Sit back and watch the tomatoes turn bright red without any birds pecking out the sweetness.