Ask a Question forum: Low-cost deer fence ideas?

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Name: Jai or Jack
WV (Zone 6b)
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Jai_Ganesha
Mar 24, 2017 2:51 AM CST
I'm looking for ideas about building or erecting a low-cost deer fence to keep deer out of the little area where I grow tomatoes. Last year they pulverized my plants and this year I'd like to protect them somehow. I'm likely to move this winter so it need not be permanent or expensive.

Any ideas?
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Name: Amanda
KC metro area, Missouri (Zone 6a)
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pepper23
Mar 24, 2017 3:14 AM CST
At a local botanical garden near me they use t posts and wire. They have 2 sections going around the garden areas they want to protect. The section on the outside is set higher than the section on the inside. It throws the deer off so they don't jump in there. It's usually 3 strands of wire if I remember right. If you make it an electric fence that helps also.

Name: Yardenman
Maryland (Zone 7a)
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Yardenman
Mar 24, 2017 3:47 AM CST
How about laying 2"x3" vinyl fencing or 1" chicken wire held above the ground 12" for 3' away? I don't think they will want to walk on that. Too dangerous to their hooves.

For larger areas, no deer has ever jumped my 6' high shadowbox fence. They could, but I think it is because they aren't sure what is on the other side.
Name: stone
near Macon Georgia (USA) (Zone 8a)
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stone
Mar 24, 2017 7:03 AM CST
If you plan to move, and don't plan to take the fence, some poultry netting will do the trick.
The problem with chicken wire... Is while it's cheap, at my house, it doesn't last... A year or two, and they walk right through it.
Welded wire is more expensive, but lasts. I won't say it's permanent, but should last 20 years or more....
Usually, a 6 ft fence is enough to keep them out. In town, people I've put the wire up for... Go with 5 ft wire.
I like to hang it at the tree line, it pretty much disappears from sight. And to my way of thinking, this is part of the reason the deer seem to avoid it.... If they can't see it, running into it a time or two.... Is quite sufficient to teach them to avoid the wire.
Electric fencing is cheaper, and I know people that have used it with varying degrees of success... In truth..... When I was helping them... The deer were fairly aggressively jumping between the wires. Once they get a taste of those yummy veggies, they can be pretty determined to get more....
Name: Yardenman
Maryland (Zone 7a)
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Yardenman
Mar 24, 2017 7:36 AM CST
stone said:If you plan to move, and don't plan to take the fence, some poultry netting will do the trick.
The problem with chicken wire... Is while it's cheap, at my house, it doesn't last... A year or two, and they walk right through it.
Welded wire is more expensive, but lasts. I won't say it's permanent, but should last 20 years or more....
Usually, a 6 ft fence is enough to keep them out. In town, people I've put the wire up for... Go with 5 ft wire.
I like to hang it at the tree line, it pretty much disappears from sight. And to my way of thinking, this is part of the reason the deer seem to avoid it.... If they can't see it, running into it a time or two.... Is quite sufficient to teach them to avoid the wire.
Electric fencing is cheaper, and I know people that have used it with varying degrees of success... In truth..... When I was helping them... The deer were fairly aggressively jumping between the wires. Once they get a taste of those yummy veggies, they can be pretty determined to get more....


I won't use electrified fence because of my 3 cats and 2 neighbor ones. From my experience, deer do not like to set their feet down in raised 2" by 3" mesh. They are geared to flee at threats and standing in wire mesh is a slowdown.

Name: Sherry Austin
Santa Cruz, CA (Zone 9a)
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Henhouse
Mar 24, 2017 2:18 PM CST
I've seen people use re-bar with construction webbing.. It's not the most attractive, but gets the job done.. You can just weave the mesh through the rebar and limit tying.. Re-bar is cheaper than t-stakes, I believe, and you can get them in long lengths.. Might want to do the corners in t-stakes for strength though..

I've had two 4' fences, 4' apart work too. They won't jump into something that small, and also won't go over something if they can't see the other side..
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Name: Lyn
Weaverville, California (Zone 8a)
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RoseBlush1
Mar 24, 2017 5:34 PM CST
Sherry ... Stone is right about deer being very determined once they have found out that there is "good stuff" on the other side of the fence ... Sighing!

The town deer found a way to get into my garden this winter by going over the trash cans down in the carport to walk between the base of an almost vertical slope and a fence protecting a rose down on the street level to a point where they could climb the slope and jump a 3' fence at the top. It took me all winter to find out where they were getting into the garden.

Once I blocked that entry point, they jumped fences that they haven't jumped in over a decade.

This is a post I put up on the Rose Forum with a couple of photos showing where they made their blind jumps.

https://garden.org/thread/view...

The deer never jumped the fence at the top of the slope because they could not see a place to land from the other side. However, once they had been in the garden, all bets were off. All I can do is make the fences much higher.
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Name: Karen
NM (Zone 7b)
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plantmanager
Mar 24, 2017 5:47 PM CST
They also hate the smell of Irish Spring Soap. You can sliver the soap up and put a few slivers in a cheesecloth baggie. Tie it to your fence, or plants and that will keep them away. It lasts quite a while too, if you don't have frequent rains.
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Name: Porkpal
Richmond, TX
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porkpal
Mar 24, 2017 6:07 PM CST
Electric fencing does not deter deer on my farm. I like Yardenman's idea.
Porkpal
Name: Jai or Jack
WV (Zone 6b)
Om shanti om.
Container Gardener Region: West Virginia Multi-Region Gardener Garden Photography Amaryllis Zinnias
Gardens in Buckets Annuals Houseplants Plant and/or Seed Trader Birds Garden Ideas: Level 1
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Jai_Ganesha
Mar 24, 2017 6:09 PM CST
I am convinced that my deer can sprout wings and fly over things...

Now I'm wondering if a narrow fenced in area would work better since it would be hard for them to land.
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