Many varieties of columbine or Aquilegia are in beautiful full bloom in the perennial beds.
As plants such as catmint, heuchera, polemonium, geum, and poppies grow to fill gaps, I’ve been looking for a way to keep the hens out of the bare spots where they love to make a mess scratching and pecking. The stake and string barriers were too easy for them to pass through, and low fences were practically an invitation for them to stretch their wings and hop over.
I’d read online that others have tried inserting plastic forks into the bare dirt to discourage hens, so yesterday I found and purchased over 200 pieces of black plastic utensils at a dollar store. I promptly placed my $5 investment in the ground. I chose black so they would blend in from afar.
The poppy area from afar and up close:
Other areas from afar and up close, showing their hidden surprises:
Great news: It worked! During yesterday afternoon’s free range hours, the girls stayed out of the perennial beds. All is copacetic at Coppertop.