Bug Defense Cage From Old Window Screens

by Daisy on 08/08/2016

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I know it’s late in the season for squash, but I just had to give it one last try.

My inability to win the squash bug, squash beetle, and, particularly, squash BORER battle is a sore spot with me. This may not work either, but like Charlie Brown and that football, I can’t resist.

I think I dreamed this one up. I woke up with the idea of using old, discarded screens to make a large cage big enough for summer squash. Thanks to The Curb Whisperer, of course I had a giant pile of old screens. (Whadya need? Screens? Cinderblocks? Conveyor belting? Patio umbrellas? Scarecrows? She got you covered).

What then?

I took some duct tape. Technically it was something called Gorilla tape. It is sticky. It will take you twenty minutes to unstick a skink from this stuff if you accidentally leave a piece laying around. Any duct tape will do, though.

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I taped two together for each side, and taped one on each end. You can make any shape to fit your needs, as long as you keep in mind the size of the screens or screening material you’re going to use for the “roof.”

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I’m going to let the squash seeds sprout and grow just a bit, then prop more screens on top to seal off the cage completely. Netting or shade cloth or something similar would work, too, as long as you secure it well.

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I’m still figuring out how to let in enough pollinators without letting in the pests. I may have to use a paint brush.

I’ll report back on the success or failure of this project. I’m sure it would be great for other pests, like the cabbage worms that plague cole crops.

I couldn’t help but think, too, looking at it, that it would make a great, moveable temporary pen for chickens. You could pop a few hens in there over a bed you wanted cleared out of bugs and weeds and they’d have it turned over for you (and fertilized) in no time.

I think I’m going to have to make another one.

Curb Whisperer, tell Uncle Wilbur to be on the lookout. This is fun.

The skink was fine.

Traumatized, but fine.

 

 

 



{ 3 comments… read them below or add one }

Russ August 9, 2016 at 7:51 pm

Try putting in some soldier fly larva to start with. I have to do something like this also because of bad bugs.

Kay R in WA August 10, 2016 at 9:25 am

Ok, this is why I love your blog. How did I not think of this? I have about 10 of these screens. I bought them ultra-cheap from a hardware store going out of business and have used a couple of them for drying herbs. The rest are stacked in the corner. Wow, I am putting them to use pronto!

Daisy August 10, 2016 at 12:37 pm

Kay R–Thank you! I’m so glad you found this useful. After I made it and it was so easy I wondered why I hadn’t thought of it years ago. Good luck with yours!

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