Protecting against wild boar

I have seen my enemy and he is small.

Shetland pony small. Leonberger dog small. Baby hippo small.

A young wild boar. A male as he is solitary. And rather partial to my mulched trees. And the mulberries.

I love the wildlife on our farm.

Early in the morning I can stand in my office and look out at forest creatures : deer and hare.

The deer are very active right now. Females with young, some territorial males which set up that fantastic territorial barking noise.

And in the evening all these wild animals all make a beeline for the fabulous sweet white mulberry fruit on the tree below the house.

I haven’t taken a very fetching shot. The flowering chestnuts behind are distracting from the view.

It actually stands alone, its roots hogging the precious underground spring that appears right at the base of the wall.

Here it is in 2007.

Looking quite sprightly for a 250 year old fruit tree.

But naturally it has suffered from the elements (lightning strike) and the voracious munching of many mouths on any branch within reach.

You can see all the bare lower branches in the first shot.

I don’t begrudge the wild animals their leafy greens and sweet white fruit.

But I am Very Cross about the boar.

And that’s the rub. You can prepare your planting hole, lovingly put in the crab apples and liquidambar trees. Kill your back hauling watering cans 100 metres from a tap. Down a steep path.

I did fence the trees. Neat wire circles to keep out the deer and hares.

And I mulched.

And that’s the trouble. Thick mulch around the base of the trees is just catnip to boar. Grubs lurk underneath.

So I have raked the soil back over the roots (hissing under my breath), stamped down the remaining mulch.

And I have added a double layer of fencing. A cordon around the cordon. Cordon sanitaire. Cordon to save my sanity.

And I am going to be very sparing with the mulch from now on.