Woodchuck defenses

I'm planning on putting in tomatoes this year, however I have a woodchuck living in my yard and rumor has it that woodchucks love tomatoes. Turing (my woodchuck) is a cute little guy so I'm not going to trap or kill him. Trapping would be hopeless anyway, I gave up gardening 20 years ago because after trapping and moving 10 raccoons a year for 4 years I failed to make a dent in their population (I moved them seven miles away to the other side of the Merrimac river so I don't think it was the same ones coming back).
I'm thinking that a fence around the garden is the only means of keeping the woodchucks and raccoons out. My question is how tall does it have to be and how deep to I have to bury it in the ground?
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We've been growing tomatoes here in our garden for the past 27 years. We have woodchucks aplenty but never have we had a problem with them bothering the tomatoes. That may be because they have access to 20+ acres of an alfalfa/clover mix. As for raccoons, they've never bothered the tomatoes either. Now, sweet corn, that's another thing. They know exactly when it is going to be ready to pick and they destroy the whole patch the night before. In past years, they also took more than their share of our chickens. The pests we have the most problems with are the wild cottontails. They will nip off almost any tender young plants, lettuce, beans, peas, cabbage, etc.
Ross Southern Ontario, Canada. New AgCanada Zone 5b 4317'28.63" North 8013'28.55" West To email, remove the obvious from my address.
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On Mon, 01 May 2006 18:35:17 -0400, snipped-for-privacy@forteinc.com wrote:

Groundhogs love my tomatoes. They wait untill they are just ripe and take the best ones. If they can't reach, no problem. just tear down the whole vine. They love all cabbage plants and carrot tops as well. I only have problems with coons if I raise corn
A good groundhog is a dead groundhog.
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: Groundhogs love my tomatoes. They wait untill they are just ripe and : take the best ones. If they can't reach, no problem. just tear down : the whole vine. They love all cabbage plants and carrot tops as well. : I only have problems with coons if I raise corn : : A good groundhog is a dead groundhog.
We are in West Tennessee and this is our third gardening season here. Until this year we have not seen groundhogs on our place. But so far this year we have spotted two. One has already been - ehmmm - removed - the other got lucky, So far.
Something that we found mildly funny the first year as far as tomatoes was that the ones that were low to the ground had little bites out of them. We found out it was the turtles that were nibbling on them. Funny in one way, not funny in another.
This is our first year to plant any corn at all and I'm hoping that my cats keep most of the wild beasts away from the garden. Rabbits for sure will be kept busy if they try to invade, but the groundhogs frighten my little hunter cat.
Kate
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On Sat, 06 May 2006 17:54:12 -0500, Kate wrote:

A woodchuck is bigger than a cat so I don't see how a cat is going to help. My cat did a good job of protecting my blueberries from birds last year but he has the good sense not to go near the woodchuck.
For corn the big problem is raccoons which carry rabies so you don't want to trap them and you certainly don't want your pets near them.
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wrote:

It was the squirrels that did in our corn - cleaned it out, just as it got ripe. We got to eat about 6 ears, out of 120.
Last yar, woodchucks took the carrot tops, sampled the parsip tops, wiped out the brocolli. Something - we're not sure what - lunched on the cabbage. All of that was with a fence, and another fence laid along the ground, with the idea that it would keep them from digging under. Silly us.
Nothing ate our tomatoes last year. One year, we saw a squirrel sampling them - it was like, "Well, I didn't like that last one, but maybe the next one will be better."
Alas.
George
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On Mon, 01 May 2006 11:04:22 -0400, General Schvantzkoph

-------- I have a 3 foot fence with small spacing at the bottom and larger spacing near the top. I think it's called rabbit fence because the smaller spacing at the bottom is supposed to keep out the rabbits.
Anyway, I have seen the groundhogs climb the fence about 2 foot up and squeeze through the larger spacing holes near the top of the fence. If I had to re-do my fence, I'd get a 5 foot tall fence with very small spacing and put it 1 foot under the ground. Then I'd back fill the dirt with a combo of stones & broken glass to discourage any digging. I'm not sure if this would work but this is what I would try.
PS: If you do any live animal trapping, try spray painting their fur to mark them before you transport them anywhere. 7 miles might not be far enough. I have heard stories where animals like squirels were taken miles away and the just about beat the transport vehicle home.
---pete---
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On Mon, 15 May 2006 13:49:16 +0000, ---Pete--- wrote:

When I did raccoon trapping in the past I moved them across the Merrimac river which is a pretty substantial river so I doubt it was the same ones finding their way back. However since then there has been a serious rabies epidemic in the raccoon population so I wouldn't dare try that today. I'm going to try a fence and see if that does it. However before I do anything the rain has to stop, my side yard is a lake at the moment (btw a cubit is about 20 inches, is that right?).
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On Mon, 15 May 2006 13:49:16 GMT, snipped-for-privacy@snip.net (---Pete---) wrote:

Groundhogs are fierce diggers and can even undermine the foundation of a home. I, myself have only found success with growing what they like up on my deck and gating off the stairs (think large sheet of plywood) so they have no access to what it grown up there.
I have tried trapping, fencing, and even brick sunk below ground, etc...nothing has beaten them. I hate the bastards, frankly.
Boron
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