I have just enough 24" hardware cloth left over that if cut in half (12"s) I can make an apron all the way around my run. I wanted to dig down 12"s but even with soaking the ground the gravel and clay are not giving. (We borrowed an electric chisel thing to dig for our posts) If I lay the 12" hardware cloth straight out and cover with dirt am I OK? I'll add a 12" planter on two sides, on top of the apron, but two sides will just be covered in dirt and river rock. As a side note, my neighbor has free ranged her hens 24/7 for 5 years without incident. My cat has had surgery 3 times in 11 years from raccoon attacks. My cat is afraid of it's own shadow so I'm sure she was chased and didn't approach a raccoon. I just find it odd that 50' away hens roam free and the raccoons leave them alone. I still want to provide as safe a home as I can for my girls....just in case it's just my yard and bad karma lol.