Most of us probably live in some sort of structure that has multiple entrances, including the front door. How nice would it be if you could ensure any malicious attacker had no choice but to knock? Detouring threats to as few possible locations as possible is the goal with tactical landscaping.
Tactical landscaping uses injurious and sometimes deadly plants to prevent threats of human or animal kind to end up at a location of your choosing. In a sense you are creating a maze that, if intended, cannot be escaped or penetrated. As all homesteads differ it will take some creativity to accomplish, but with the following plants you can create a truly impenetrable structure and place your assailants in whichever crosshairs you desire.
It’s best to consider windows and short areas of the structure you intend to defend first, and in those places it is wise to use plants with long branches that act as guards. Sounds harmless, probably, but we haven’t talked about how these branches are covered in thorns. One of the best window guards nature can provide is the Hawthorne plant. It can grow mall enough for a single window yet can grow large enough to protect entire walls, and its thorns can elongate past 6 inches in some occasions. Nobody will come close to your windows when these botanical daggers are in their way.
Next are the paths around your perimeters. Typically those that intend to do you harm aren’t the cultured botanist that you are and they won’t realize they are walking through short paths of excruciating stinging nettles surrounded by burning oak so there is no escape. As they start to feel that discomfort they will start to move a little faster, and you knew that. The next defense plant is the general “loud plant”.
In order to stay aware of an attack or any punk around trying to steal your bicycle it is wise to place plants that make a ton of noise when stepped on or walked about. Succulents and runners like Lantana and Bells of Ireland grow nearly anywhere, are pretty quick to elongate and make plenty of noise. They are also similar to the mint plant which is useful in many other ways, but will grow where ever there is water, crunch loudly when stepped on and as a bonus you will be able to smell the minty aroma when someone is invading your space.
For the more sure-sighted homesteader there are types of trees that can be placed with purpose around whichever area that protection is necessary. The first are those with tall, long branches that reach toward the sky. These are best for hiding and lining up sights behind. A great example of this “deer blind” type tree is the Quaking Aspen or any tree of the poplus genus. they are tall dense and make for great cover.
The other type of tree is the broad branched climbing type tree. The Pecan tree is great to climb and set in if a threat is imminent. They grow grow tall and strong with multiple support branches and a food source if the season is right. They are perfect trees to wait in if one must remain unseen for long spans of time, and they smell nice too.
All in all a defensive homesteader will know and respect their surroundings, but most importantly they will use them to deter and manipulate the ill minded.