A garden is an important property for people practicing the off-grid lifestyle. They grow their own food for survival to limit their reliance on grocery stores and supermarkets. Hence, it’s extremely crucial for them to guard the garden in order to protect the harvest from wandering wild animals. Among different wild animals, deer is a common landscape pest. This beautiful bounding pest can swiftly pass through plain fields and trees with equal ease. It can also cross a two-lane road in a single jump. Thus, it’s very easy for this innocent looking animal to use your garden as their buffet, leaving it into ashes!
They can ruin months of the hard work you have done in your carefully tended garden in a single night. Moreover, the repairing (if possible) of cosmetic damage that they do to your landscape is a much costly and frustrating task. Fortunately, there are many easy and effective strategies to keep deer away from your yard.
Keep on reading to learn tricks that can make your garden deer-proof!
Selection of Plants for Your Garden
The first line of defense to deter a deer attack is always a smart plant selection. While buying plants for your garden, always go for the ones that have hairy and prickly foliage or texture. It is because most of the deer don’t like to feed on plants that have hair and spines on their leaves. The examples include lambs ear, lady’s mantle, Siberian bugloss, bear’s breeches, globe thistle, cardoon, etc. Moreover, deer prefer to eat flowering, and woody plant shoots over grasses. Hence ornamental grasses make a great plant choice for a deer-proof garden.
Build a Fence
The use of fences is another most effective method to keep the deer on their toes and out of your lovely garden. You can use wood or wire for fencing your yard. As you know, deer are good jumpers, so make sure that the barriers are 8-10 feet high and 6-8 inches apart. The use of electric fences during the peak feeding seasons (early spring and late fall) is another good option. The fence tilted outwards at a 45-degree angle gives the best result.
Add Moving Objects in Your Garden
The addition of some moving decoration to the garden not only beautifies your landscape but also helps keep deer out of your garden. Pick any moving decoration piece that wiggles, whistles, spins, or rotates with the help of wind or solar power. The unusual movements and sounds make deer wary of entering your garden. You can also use motion sensors and sprinklers to frighten these invaders.
Add Levels to Your Garden
Deer don’t like to climb up or down the steep slopes. A yard that looks sloppy loses deer’s interest to enter. So, contour your landscape by building terraces, lower beds, and stacked wood cuttings to prevent their entry into your yard. Their fear of jumping and climbing these contoured levels will turn them away in search of other grazing spots.
Your Pet Is Your Garden’s Guardian
Your adorable dog is your best weapon to encounter the deer invasion. Let your dog play in your yard for maximum time.
On seeing this pesky animal, your dog will bark, which is enough to make them run away.
Hedging of Your Garden Edges
Create a thick hedge around your garden boundaries by planting sprawling deer repellent varieties or short needle spruces. By doing this, deer won’t be able to look into your yard and is less likely to invade such an unseen place. Hence these hedgy plantings create a wall of defense against the entry of deer. You can also plant some spiky vegetation around the garden edges to prevent their entry.
Deter Deer with Odors:
Deer have a strong sense of smell; you can use it as an opportunity to guard your garden. Using heavily scented products is an effective approach to keep deer away from your garden. The most popular and long-lasting deterrent is deodorant soap bars. Take several scented soap bars and hang them with the trees by making a hole in the bar. The smell of soap keeps them away from your yard.
But, we can’t rely on a single type of scented deterrent. Use a couple of such deterrents together to outsmart the deer. Some of these include spreading talcum powder, mothballs, decaying fish heads, blood meal, hot sauce or cayenne pepper, and garlic around your garden plants.
Spread Human Hair Clippings
Make good use of your fallen or recently cut hair. Collect your hair clippings and scatter them around the edges of your garden bed. Wandering deer smells the hair and associate it with the odor of humans. Consequently, the threat of human presence forces them to stay away from your beautiful garden.
Cleanliness Is the Key
It’s important to keep your garden neat and clean. Properly discard the crop’s leftovers after harvesting your produce and trim the tall grasses regularly.
Use Multiple Methods
Deer resembles humans in nature. They are very adaptable, persistent, and resourceful. The use of a single trick that can scare away some deer may not always work on the others, but adopting a combination of strategies can increase the chances. Apply various methods like fencing, planting deer-resistant vegetation, using scare tactics, and other deterrents to keep their invasion at bay.
Living off the grid means that you grow and secure your own food. Don’t let that food get wasted by wild animals. Though keeping deer out of your garden is a challenging task but not impossible. Apply an integrated approach of the ideas mentioned above to keep these graceful green munchers away from your prized garden. Remember that prevention is always better than cure.
Now go ahead and conquer!