One of the worst things in the world is to wake up in the morning and realize your vegetables have been vandalized, destroyed or eaten. Make it as difficult as possible for deer to use your garden as a buffet and playground. Look for tracks and deer paths, this way you’ll know where the deer are entering your garden, and head them off.
Keeping Deer Out of Your Garden
There are some repellents that may keep deer from your garden. Although no plant is completely deer-proof, certain generalizations can be made about plants that deer are likely to ignore. Fuzzy-leaved plants seem to be unpalatable to deer—the hairs on the leaves must be irritating to the tongue. Lamb’s ears, licorice plant, and lady’s mantle are good examples.
Some plants contain compounds that are poisonous to mammals and deer in particular. By instinct or because they were taught by their mothers, deer detect the presence of these compounds, though in desperate hunger situations they will resort to eating them. Deer have an excellent sense of smell and get confused when over stimulated by aromatic or fragrant foliage or flowers.
Other suggestions for reducing damage from deer: Use combination planting in mixed beds and borders. Integrate at-risk plant species with deer-unfriendly natives. Hang them high; that includes plants and birdfeeders. Remove shrubs or understory plants that give deer shelter and invite them to linger. Prune low-hanging limbs on fruit trees. Place plant containers near the house or beyond the animals’ reach on patios and decks. Add yard art or ornaments that frighten deer. Strips of light-reflecting aluminum and objects with moving parts often prove effective. Orchard fruits, vineyard grapes and acorns littering the ground constitute a deer feast. Gather them up.
Here are some other ideas to keep deer away from your garden:
- Build raised beds for your vegetable garden.
- Make pathways between your beds as narrow as possible.
- Interplant different vegetables with each other.
- Build fencing around your vegetable garden beds.
- Add plenty of mulch around your vegetables.
- Plant attractive foods away from your garden.
- Human or dog hair (Using human hair from a salon or pet hair from a groomer is one method that some people try to keep deer away. Placing it around your special plants may be helpful.)
- Tying bars of deodorant soap around your garden is known to work well in some cases.
- Predator urine (Its exactly what it says. Urine of wolves and coyotes which are natural predators of deer. Smelling this in an area makes deer leave the area.)
- Ultrasonic devices (These devices startle deer from your yard by using motion activated high-pitch sound waves which disturb the deer and not you.)
These things are not applicable to all cases. However, it’s still good to know the possible remedies you can do to keep destructive deer out of your well-kept garden.