Keeping deer out of your garden can be a rather challenging task. In some areas, herds of deer can decimate everything from one shrub to whole gardens within days. We have put together some information that may help. First of all, white tail deer in the Maryland area have become quite a problem, with large populations freely roaming neighborhoods sampling from here and there. Deer naturally have a healthy appetite and love eating from gardens much like a salad buffet.
Narrow leaf evergreens such as arborvitae, hydrangea and hostas are popular favorites as well as daylilies, roses, and pansies. The heaviest feeding and plant destruction occur between the months of October and February. Whitetail deer feed year-round, but the fall and winter months tend to be the times when most garden and tree damage occurs. Deer seem to like to feed during low light times of the day such as dawn and dusk. Some studies show that deer seem to know the poisonous plants such as daffodils, foxgloves, and poppies which are not favorites among the deer population. Deer also seem to not care for fragrant plants with stronger scents such as sages, lavenders, bearded irises, and peonies. Deer seem to also stray away from prickly plants such as Barberry, pyracantha, and osmanthus, that are not favorites of the white tail.
Deer Prevention and Control
There is no one particular method to stop deer from eating your plants, trees, and evergreens, but there are some techniques you can try to deter deer.
Spray flowers gardens and evergreens with a deer repellent that contains a mixture of dried bovine blood, sulfured eggs, and garlic. These repellents are available at most home and garden stores. They will not harm your plants and are usually effective in deterring deer.
Another couple of natural deer repellents are combined 1 egg, ½ cup of milk, 1 tablespoon of dish detergent, and 1 gallon of water. Spray the mixture over plants. Or try mixing two tablespoons of Tabasco sauce to a gallon of water and spray the foliage and fruit.
Another method is to use a motion detector in your garden. The deer will trigger it and will scare them away. Some online retailers have motion activated sprinklers that will turn on only after the deer set off the detector. Be careful you don’t get sprayed!
A more proven method to protect plants and gardens is to setup protective netting over plants. Netting can be purchased from most garden centers and big box stores.
Another method used to deter the deer is to use predator urine such as coyote or wolf urine. These products can be found in most garden stores.
If you need help with deterring deer from your valued plants, you can, of course, contact American Landscaping. We can help you determine which plan is best to prevent deer from munching in your garden and yard.