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I also find it amusing when TV gardeners recommend we should use plants which slugs and snails dislike, such as hairy prickly plants and strongly flavoured herbs. They have eaten all my echinacea, in fact they love the flavour and it is the first to go. They have eaten thyme, sage, marjoram and feverfew (perhaps they had a headache after all those strong flavours?) I've come to the conclusion that if there are enough of them they will eat EVERYTHING AND ANYTHING! They even strip the bark from decorative willow arches, trellises and supports. However, they don't appear to relish conifers or lavender. I must say I have to admire their tenacity!
I have been given this recipe by an Australian friend, for a home brewed potion, said to deter rabbits, and also Possums, if you should happen to be bothered by those too.

Recipe:- Chop 4 large onions, 4 hot chillies and 2 garlic cloves. Cover the lot with warm soapy water, and leave to steep for 24 hours. Strain off the liquid and add 5 Litres of water to the concentrate. Stores well for up to three weeks in a screw top jar in a cool dark place. Spray your plants with this, and it's bye bye bunnies, it's also great against aphids.

I hasten to add, that l personally, have never tried this recipe, although my friend swore by it, l admit l erected a fence, which has worked, and l am now bunnyless!

There seems to be an increased interest in the culinary delights of rabbits perhaps we should invest in more shotguns and shoot them. We could then eat them with our home grown veg.
Our pet rabbits' hutch is always open. so they run free over half the garden and the large patio area. Besides their usual pelleted food, they have loads of grass to eat, are given bundles of fresh hay every day, along with cabbages and the odd carrot, but they still choose to eat everything else in the garden - yes, even those things that apparently they don't like.

Sometimes I ask for trouble, though, as I forget about the rabbits and do something rash like bring some plants back from the garden centre and leave them on the patio for a few minutes whilst I rummage in the potting shed, only to come back out and find there's no plants left! I lost lots of fuchsias that way last year. They do love their fuchsias - and bulbs, especially crocus, although they're not too keen on daffodils.

I know it's our fault for letting them have their freedom in the first place, but we didn't want to keep them caged and they really are VERY happy, running around and playing (and nibbling my plants!). It helps that they are incredibly cute as well, especially when they sit up and wash their ears which makes them just look like Thumper from Bambi. I love my garden as well, though, so I'm going to have to have a re-think. I don't think the answer is rabbit stew though!

I have a fair bit of knowledge when it comes to these fluffy vermin. Chicken wire/nets may seem a good idea to keep them out, but rabbits are very good at burrowing under these things. Sinking the wire a few inches into the ground would help and using a thicker wire, as they do tend to have a go at chewing through as well. Also, if your getting rabbits in flowered area's, they could burrow in and next thing you know, there's a whole family. I must admit, there's been a massive increase this year in the rabbit population and could get worse.


Rabbits, rabbits everywhere and they will have a go at eating anything. A fruit cage is my only refuge but unfortunately I can't cover the whole garden with it! I have had a certain amount of success with rubber snakes at strategic points and draped around shrubs, but you have to move them regularly so the rabbits don't get used to them, and I have had a couple of near heart attacks when the snakes have fallen off their perches as I move through the vegetation! And what about deer, squirrels, badgers, foxes - all can be such a pain but I wouldn't be without them.
I have done a little more research on your behalf (such dedication) and have come up with a couple of other recipes similar to Joy's. They all seem to have roughly the same ingredients - mostly garlic, chillies and soap. I have also found one that uses fish oil and another that contains egg - both admit that the smell is pretty bad initially. I think that we need to do a controlled experiment. Do they have rabbits at Berryfields? if not perhaps we could introduce one - all in the cause of scientific experiment, of course (I'm sure Alys wouldn't mind much!). The important thing is to keep applying it regularly so that the scent is always strong enough to discourage that first bite. Any volunteers?
I have a large Abutilon which I have brought in for the Winter. It is very wide and about 4ft tall. Do I cut it right down now?
Don't get ARBUTUS, the strawberry bush, its on the RHS list but the bleeders eat it!!!
I find that red hot pokers are left alone by our wild rabbits. And crocosmia also is left alone - good luck.
we have a wild rabbit that keeps coming in to the garden from the field at the back of our house. it sits in the middle of the grass eating the clover.
just back from a lovely 2 week holiday, safe in the knowledge that the rabbits had done a runner!! yeah right every single carrot, beetroot and parsnip gone from my veg patch!! im gonna get me a gun.
I was horrified to discover huge sections of a beech hedge planted as whips last year around my veg patch totally eaten away.Oddly enough the veg so far in raised 8 inch beds have been untouched,but maybe they havent got round to it yet!I suspect I will have no alternative than to get a rabbit proof fence erected around this area.Unfortunately fencing the entire 2 acre garden is not really possible.I am waiting in dread for the rabbits to start on the flower garden.
I've got rabbits too and its causing me a nightmare. Trying to hard to get some beds going in my large garden. Cant afford to fence the entire garden and also, we've rabbits living in some of the banks within the garden itself. The farmer says he gases his rabbits. Planted a large Fatsia Jap and so far, its surviving! Grape Hyacinth though has been nibbled down to the soil!


You have my sympathy, Melanie. The Fatsia will survive. Most rabbit damage is done to young plants, can you put wire cages on them just until they get established?
I have just planted some pot roses (c35) in a border but rabbits have started nibbling buds and stripping leaves. Will this be damaging to roses long term? I have ordered some "Grazers" - has anyone tried it before? - does it work?
Hi. I tried "Grazers" and found that it certainly slows down the onslaught but you need to reapply every few weeks. Also if they don't like the taste of the Grazer they try to dig up the roots instead! My rabbits sample everything new in the garden, and particularly favour Lavender, Holly, Heather and Roses. They are also partial to anything resembling an alpine or rockery plant but seem to leave most herbaceous plants alone. New shoots on decideous trees and shribs are innresistable. Chicken wire fences work but you still need a daily inspection to detect any "breaches" of your defenses. In the end I have concluded that I enjoy the company of the rabbits frolicing in my garden so much that I have decided to work with them rather than against them - ir they leave anything alone I plant more of it, and if they destroy anything I replace it with an alternative.
We have lots of wild rabbits in our 2 acres-mostly they just eat grass and weeds. We protect our veg with nets/cages but it is not really a major probloem as far as the plants are concerned. Maybe we just have more co-operative rabbits!

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