Everything You Need to Know About Garden Netting: A Complete Guide

Garden Netting

If you are a gardener who loves growing fruits, vegetables, flowers, or herbs in your backyard or allotment, you may have encountered some challenges along the way. Pests such as birds, insects, deer, or rabbits may have nibbled on your produce or damaged your plants. Weather conditions such as strong winds, scorching sun, or frost may have affected your plant growth or survival. Or you may have simply wanted to improve the look and feel of your garden by adding some structure or shade.

One solution that can help you overcome these challenges is using netting for garden. This is a type of fabric that covers part or all of your plants to protect them from various threats or enhance their environment. In this article, we will explore some of the different types of garden nettings available in the UK market, their benefits, and some tips on how to use them effectively.

What is Garden Netting?

Garden netting is a type of mesh material made from various materials, including plastic, nylon, or metal wire. The netting is used to cover plants and crops to protect them from pests and other animals that might damage or eat them.

Benefits of Garden Netting

Garden netting offers several benefits for gardeners, including:

  • Protects crops from pests and predators: Garden netting can protect your crops from pests such as birds, rabbits, squirrels, and insects, which can cause significant damage to your plants.
  • Allows air and light to circulate: Garden netting is made from a mesh material that allows air and light to circulate, ensuring your plants get the necessary nutrients and sunlight.
  • Reduces the need for harmful chemicals: Using garden netting can reduce the need for harmful chemicals that are often used to control pests, which can harm the environment and your health.
  • Provides shade and wind protection: Some types of garden netting can provide shade and wind protection for your plants, ensuring they remain healthy and vibrant.

Different Types of Garden Netting

There are several types of garden netting available, each with its unique features and benefits. The four most common types are bird netting, insect netting, shade netting, and windbreak netting.

Bird Netting

Bird Netting
Bird Netting

This is a type of net that prevents birds from accessing your fruits and berries such as strawberries, raspberries, blackberries, cherries, or apples. Birds can be very persistent and clever in finding ways to get to these delicious treats, so you need to cover them well with bird nettings that have small holes (around 10-20 mm) that they cannot fit through. You can also use bird scarers such as CDs, wind chimes, or fake predators to deter them further

Insect Netting

Insect Netting
Insect Netting

This is a type of net that keeps away various insects such as aphids, carrot flies, flea beetles, whiteflies, or thrips from your crops. These insects can suck the sap, transmit diseases, or lay eggs on your plants, causing them to wilt, deform, or die. Insect nettings have very fine holes (around 0.6-1.3 mm) that block these tiny invaders but still allow light and water to pass through. Some insect nettings also have optical additives such as aluminium strips that reflect light and confuse the insects

Shade Netting

Shade Netting
Shade Netting

This is a type of net that creates a cooler microclimate for your plants in hot weather. High temperatures can cause heat stress to your plants by damaging their cells, inhibiting photosynthesis and respiration. Shade nettings have medium holes (around 10-30 mm) that filter out some of the sunlight but still allow enough for plant growth123. They also reduce water loss and evaporation from the soil. Shade nettings come in different colours and shade percentages depending on your needs

Windbreak Netting

Garden Netting
Windbreak Netting

This is a type of net that reduces the impact of strong winds on your plants. Wind can cause physical damage to your plants by breaking stems, tearing leaves, or uprooting them. It can also increase water loss through evaporation and transpiration, making your plants more prone to drought stress. Windbreak nettings have large holes (around 100-200 mm) that let some wind through but slow it down significantly. They also provide some shade and frost protection for your plants.

Tips for Using Garden Netting Effectively

Garden netting can be a great way to protect your plants from pests, diseases, and weather damage. However, it’s important to use it correctly to avoid wasting time, money, and resources. Here are some tips for using garden netting effectively:

  • Choose the right type of netting for your purpose. Different types of netting have different hole sizes, colours, and materials that suit different plants and situations. For example, insect netting is good for preventing small bugs from attacking your crops, while shade netting is good for reducing heat stress on your plants.
  • Check the quality of the netting before buying. Cheap netting may seem like a bargain, but it may not last long or provide adequate protection. Look for netting that is durable, UV-resistant, rot-resistant, and easy to handle. You can also read reviews from other customers or ask for recommendations from experts.
  • Secure the netting properly with pegs, staples, or frames. Loose netting can be blown away by wind or torn by animals. Make sure the netting is tight to the ground or attached to sturdy supports. You can also use clips or ties to join multiple pieces of netting together if needed.
  • Cut holes in the netting for planting (optional). If you want to plant through the netting instead of laying it over your plants, you can cut small holes in the netting where you want to insert your seeds or seedlings. This can help reduce weed growth and soil erosion under the netting.
  • Monitor your plants regularly and remove the netting when necessary. Netting can provide many benefits for your plants, but it can also cause some problems if left on for too long. For example, netting can reduce air circulation, trap moisture, or block pollination. Therefore, you should check your plants regularly and remove the netting when they need more light, water, or air. You should also remove the netting when your plants are ready to harvest or when the season changes.

Frequently Asked Questions

How long does garden netting last?

Garden netting can last for many years if properly maintained and stored.

Can garden netting be reused?

Yes, garden netting can be reused if it is in good condition and has been properly stored.

Can garden netting be used in all types of weather?

Garden netting is designed to withstand various weather conditions, but it may need to be removed during extreme weather events such as hurricanes or tornadoes.

Can garden netting harm birds or other animals?

Garden netting is designed to keep birds and other animals away from your plants without harming them.

Can garden netting be used in all types of gardens?

Yes, garden netting can be used in all types of gardens, including vegetable gardens, flower gardens, and fruit gardens.

In conclusion, garden netting is an excellent solution for protecting your plants and crops from pests and predators. By choosing the right netting for your needs and properly installing and maintaining it, you can ensure your plants remain healthy and vibrant throughout the growing season.

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