Dealing With Deer
When it comes to dealing with garden pests, one of the most annoying is a furry little animal that might seem relatively harmless to most people outside of the gardening world. While deer can quite easily be majestic creatures, they are also a serious menace to plants and flowers that they find particularly appealing as food. While smaller pests are easily eliminated using pesticides on flowers or allowing birds and ladybugs to stop the problem naturally, these methods won’t do much to stop deer.
Since these conventional methods for preventing pests won’t do much to prevent deer from destroying all of your hard work, this article is going to look at a few practical methods to help you out. While there are a number of odd remedies for deer issues that some gardeners will swear by, including hanging strips of clothes, different homemade plant sprays, and so many more, we won’t delve into those. These pieces of advice are simple ways in which you can hope to prevent the spread of deer caused destruction.
The most basic way to protect your garden from these four legged lawn mowers, is to simply build some form of fencing. In order to properly protect your plants, make sure that the fence is somewhere around 8-10 feet tall as deer are excellent jumpers and will easily make their way over any shorter fences.
Make sure any fence constructed to keep deer out is also free of any gaps which are large enough for a deer to squeeze through
Fencing is certainly one of the most surefire ways to prevent deer from eating the plants that are grown throughout your garden. However, there are some weaknesses as a short fence or one that contains too many gaps won’t actually get the job done. The fence will also completely contain your plants, so this method is not applicable to protecting the ornamental plants and flowers that are planted around your house.
Hot Pepper Sprays
The primary sense that deer use to find food during the spring and summer is their sense of smell. For this reason, many gardeners use tried and true deer repellents, these repellents often come in the form of sprays that are mostly based on strong pepper smells and sting. These sprays will remain on the plant for quite some time, making the plants unappealing to the deer who are typically voracious foragers of pleasant smelling greenery. Using the spray during the spring and early summer will hopefully be enough to protect your plants from deer throughout the rest of the year. However, use caution when applying the spray as it can cause harm to your eyes, other exposed skin, and to small children.
The primary sense that deer use to find food during the spring and summer is their sense of smell
Finding a way to plant those different flowers and greenery that are not appealing to a deer’s sense of smell or taste is another great way to protect your garden. Finding plants that might have a strong taste or smell to a roaming deer will likely keep them from rummaging through your entire garden. Try planting chives, garlic, and other strongly scented plants that will hopefully curb the deer's enthusiasm for your more appealing plants that may be located nearby. While this is not absolutely effective, this method is one of the easiest ways to keep deer away without using sprays or fencing.
Finding plants that might have a strong taste or smell to a roaming deer will likely keep them from rummaging through your entire garden.
If you don’t want to use more fragrant methods, a slightly less effective, but still useful method is to plant a number of thorny or tough plants. These plants are more difficult for a deer to eat, and are often not the most desirable food source. Deer are often less likely to eat these thorny plants that might cause them harm, or make their dining experience less comfortable. There are some flowering plants that are even thorny. Experiment with the use of roses to prevent deer from chewing through your garden.
These plants are more difficult for a deer to eat
Overloading Your Garden
The springtime is when deer are the most active in eating up all the plants in your backyard. This occurs as deer are coming out of the barren winter months, and some are accompanied by young fawns that have to be constantly sustained. Because deer are the most active during this time of year, consider avoiding planting mass amounts of the plants that deer love the most. For example, if you are looking to keep deer out of your garden, don’t plant an immense amount of lettuce in an easy to access location. While this is less of a method to prevent deer from eating the plants in your garden, it is certainly a solid tactic to keep them from ever getting into your garden in the first place.
The springtime is when deer are the most active in eating up all the plants in your backyard
Deer Resistant Flowers
Another way to prevent deer from eating your garden, is to simply refuse to present them with the plants that they can eat. While it might seem like deer can and will eat just about anything, we know that’s simply not true. Consider planting flowers such as bluebells, daffodils, forget me nots, mint, or roses to keep deer from eating your plants. While this might limit the number of plants or the types of plants that you can grow in your garden, they will all but guarantee to rid your garden of pesky deer.
Consider planting flowers such as bluebells, daffodils, forget me nots, mint, or roses.
Deer are naturally skittish animals, so finding ways to keep them just scared enough that they won’t bother your garden isn’t always the most difficult thing to do. Finding different noisemakers, such as wind chimes to place in your garden will do a better job than you might expect, as the sound will keep the deer afraid of your garden. Likewise, if you are a pet owner, letting your dog roam the backyard more than normal during peak deer season never hurts, deer are naturally afraid of other new animals, so this is a great repellent.