With gardening in full swing, green thumbs are quite often fixated on cutting lawns, pruning shrubs, fertilizing the garden, or monitoring dreaded weeds like “Creeping Charlie. "
With the art of horticulture demanding a gardener's undivided attention, it's easy for another type of “Creeping Charlie" to make his way through your neighborhood. I'm referring to the two-legged type that blends in like a swift-footed chameleon.
The garden thief is an opportunist who can't wait to survey the goods and make off with your favorite garden tools and equipment. Because items like lawn mowers, hedge trimmers, power washers and gas edgers carry a relatively high value, they are always front and center on a burglars’ hit list.
Don't think that garden furniture, patio accessories or yard adornments are exempt from a burglar's wish list. Quite often, a return trip in a truck is needed to load up their week's pay.
Don't let these losers steal the efforts of your hard work. Fight back with some common-sense ideas that will help send these light-fingered sneaks packing.
The first line of defense is your perimeter fence, so make sure that it is in good condition. Install secure locks on gates leading into your yard as another obstacle for intruders to overcome.
Install exterior lighting with infrared sensors that detect movement. This will help illuminate dark areas of your garden where possible. Keep any obstructions such as overgrown shrubs or large plants trimmed to create proper sight lines.
Engrave all garden equipment with your driver's license number before locking it in your outdoor shed. Make sure you install proper deadbolts on your shed or storage boxes. It's always a good idea to keep a list of serial numbers if possible.
Never leave garden equipment or machinery unattended. It only takes a thief a split second to spoil your day.
If you have any garden ornaments or expensive trees or shrubs, you should use earth-anchoring systems to hold them firmly in place. These anchors are made of steel wire that is wrapped around the protected item with the anchor end pushed into the ground with a steel pole. Once the anchor is embedded in the ground, a sharp tug will wedge the anchor permanently in the ground.
Plants can deter criminals and are very effective in the fight against crime. The combination of thorns, large branches and thick growth are all winning combinations. Some plants to consider planting next to fences, windows or drain pipes are:
Berberis Julianae: Prickly evergreen shrub with shiny dark leaves.
Climbing roses: Great for walls and fences.
Pyracantha: Large evergreen shrub, great for wall training or hedge. White flowers in May, red in June with orange, yellow berries in autumn. Large thorny branches.
Holly:Prickly evergreen shrubs for hedging or individual shrub. Great in sun or shade.
Frank Fourchalk is widely recognized for his sustained commitment to education in Home and Business security throughout North America as a result of his syndicated newspaper columns. Mr. Fourchalk has written for The Toronto Star, The Vancouver Province, and several other daily newspapsers including the New York Post. For more information on your home security check out http://www.yourhomesecurity.ca