In Praise of the Henry Garden Gun!

My much-battered Henry Garden Gun
I have to say, if you have a garden (and are reasonably out in the country) and DON’T have a Henry Garden Gun, you’re really missing a bet!
The smoothbore .22 lever gun, designed for .22 LR shotshells has done yeoman’s work throughout this spring and summer on a truly annoying garden pest, most notably the dread packrat, or rock rats as we refer to them around here. Packrats are nest builders, and I have seen them disassemble 2 or 3 garden plants and drag them back to “enhance” their nests in a single night. Since they live in the rocks, and we have no shortage of rocks up here, you can’t really eliminate them.
Early in the season, we can trap them, until the rats figure out the traps.
My Beagle Newt has learned to run them to ground as she would a rabbit. In fact, she can smell it when a packrat gets through the fences into the patio garden, even if she’s inside the house!
She runs them to ground; I eliminate them with the Garden Gun. She’s happy because it’s what Beagles were born and bred to do; I’m happy because I still have tomatoes!
My much-battered Henry Garden Gun
There’s been a shortage of .22 shot lately…I think other people have found the advantage of the quiet, short-range rounds. Luckily, a friend gave me a couple of boxes of Winchester #12 shot, which should get me through to the frost.
Notice my Garden Gun is getting a little beat up, but it’s a working gun!


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