All Things Gardening forum: Problem with Deer Coming to Our Yard

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CindyKM
Sep 27, 2017 7:15 AM CST
I am new to this and trying to get my way around with using the forum. We have a big problem with the deer getting at our vegetation. They come in groups and anytime we do a planting, our plants get eaten by them. How do I keep them away. I don't use fences and have to rely on other options if they are available. I have a suspicion though. Thank You! I do not know if these deer are coming to our yard because of some deer statuary we have set up in our yard. We bought some bronze deer sculptures from mygardengifts.com - they are gorgeous but the net result is we are seeing real deer now in our yard more than often. Please let me know what we should be doing.https://garden.org/i/s/thankyou.gif
[Last edited by CindyKM - Sep 27, 2017 7:17 AM (+)]
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Name: Rj
Just S of the twin cities of M (Zone 4b)
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crawgarden
Sep 27, 2017 8:32 AM CST
Have you tried any repellants?
I have had success with a liquid repellant called PlantSkydd, I'm sure others will chime in.
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Name: Deb
Pacific NW (Zone 8b)
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Bonehead
Sep 27, 2017 8:59 AM CST
Welcome Cindy. There have been discussions in various forums regarding deer problems. There is a search box at the top right, you might try that and see if you can find some threads to review. Lots of different ideas out there. I am not bothered by deer (they are all around me but don't come in my yard) so I don't pay that close attention to what works and what doesn't. Good luck.
I want to live in a world where the chicken can cross the road without its motives being questioned.
Name: Sandy B.
Ford River, Michigan UP (Zone 4b)
(Zone 4b-maybe 5a)
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Weedwhacker
Sep 27, 2017 9:10 AM CST
Cindy, I would guess that the deer are coming to your yard because they discovered some tasty plants there, more than because of the deer statues. There are various things that can be used to try to repel them, such as the PlantSkydd that Crawgarden mentioned, and another one called "Hinder." Some people have had success using bars of soap hung up near the plants, others recommend using human hair (like from a hair salon). I've tried a lot of different things (living in the north woods as I do) and my only real success has been to use a fence or plants that the deer aren't as partial to. For instance, deer love tulips, but rarely seem to bother daffodils.

Here's a link to a list from Rutgers Univ. with a pretty extensive listing of deer-resistant plants: https://njaes.rutgers.edu/deer...

Happy gardening!
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Name: Cindy
Hobart, IN zone 5
aka CindyMzone5
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Shadegardener
Sep 27, 2017 10:11 AM CST
Deer raided my hostas back in the spring. I live in a wooded area very close to a creek. I'm trying a deer-repellent sprinkler this summer but I'm not usually outside when the deer are browsing so I can't say if it's keeping them away. At least nothing else has gotten eaten.
Only when the last tree has died and the last river has been poisoned and the last fish has been caught will we realize that we can't eat money. Cree proverb
Name: Sandy B.
Ford River, Michigan UP (Zone 4b)
(Zone 4b-maybe 5a)
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Weedwhacker
Sep 27, 2017 12:17 PM CST
Yes, deer really like to eat hostas!
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Minnesota (Zone 3b)
RpR
Sep 27, 2017 2:45 PM CST
Where are you at?

If you do not want to, or cannot shoot them, some times it is possible to get, with permits, large firecrackers to drive them away.
The old shotgun shells loaded with rock salt in the buttocks could work also.
Name: Deb
Pacific NW (Zone 8b)
Region: Pacific Northwest Organic Gardener Deer Ferns Herbs Dragonflies
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Bonehead
Sep 27, 2017 6:54 PM CST
I had good luck shooting my mare in the rear end with a BB rifle when she was eating trees and fence posts (cribbing). Might work for deer, although they are pretty skittish so would be harder to actually hit.
I want to live in a world where the chicken can cross the road without its motives being questioned.
Name: Cora
Arlington, Va (Zone 7b)
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CoraBarner
Sep 28, 2017 6:34 AM CST
Deer eat pretty much everything. Finally, my husband put a fence around my vegetables garden so I can harvest any veggies.
Name: Yardenman
Maryland (Zone 7a)
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Yardenman
Sep 28, 2017 6:53 AM CST
CoraBarner said:Deer eat pretty much everything. Finally, my husband put a fence around my vegetables garden so I can harvest any veggies.
After ignoring my front yard hostas for 20 years, the deer ate them all right to the ground.

I am planning a nasty surprise for them.

I am going to surround each plant (Sum & Substance, 3' wide and high) with stiff wires sticking up. Let them poke their cheeks and eyes on THOSE!



Name: Alana H
(Zone 7a)
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poisondartfrog
Sep 28, 2017 7:22 AM CST
Deer eat my Daylilies to the ground every spring, and my Ipomoea are just now recovering from their browsing enough to bloom. Somehow they manage to survive. The Daylilies, not the deer. Earlier in summer I could look out almost any window around dawn and dusk and see a deer munching away on Daylily blooms-all that color being gnashed and pulverized in the mouths of ruminants of varying sizes....

Now, the deer population in my county is experiencing a severe outbreak of "Blue Tongue" disease and the population is down more than 60%. I miss them.... Sighing!
Name: Yardenman
Maryland (Zone 7a)
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Yardenman
Sep 28, 2017 7:33 AM CST
poisondartfrog said:Deer eat my Daylilies to the ground every spring, and my Ipomoea are just now recovering from their browsing enough to bloom. Somehow they manage to survive. The Daylilies, not the deer. Earlier in summer I could look out almost any window around dawn and dusk and see a deer munching away on Daylily blooms-all that color being gnashed and pulverized in the mouths of ruminants of varying sizes....

Now, the deer population in my county is experiencing a severe outbreak of "Blue Tongue" disease and the population is down more than 60%. I miss them.... Sighing!

I used to love deer. Until they came and ate all my fancy hostas. Last year and this year. And kept pulling up my Astilbes even though they didn't actually eat them. I had to replant them so often half died.

Now I just want those big rabbits to die...

Forgive my anger. I thought they only liked the fancy hostas bwcause they ate them and left the big Sum&Substance alone. But they took them next. Now I just have 2 large front landscaping framed boxes of weeds!

I'm wondering about an automated (motion-detector) pepper spray device... I would love to see the "vicious deer" staggering around afraid to ever come here again...



Minnesota (Zone 3b)
RpR
Sep 28, 2017 12:42 PM CST
Deer is the alternate spelling for vermin.
Name: Yardenman
Maryland (Zone 7a)
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Yardenman
Sep 28, 2017 12:50 PM CST
RpR said:Deer is the alternate spelling for vermin.


Yay! I would say"let loose the wolves" but I would need to build a moat and fence around the property. True predators can be SO annoying when taking out the trash at night...

Name: greene
Savannah, GA (Sunset 28) (Zone 8b)
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greene
Sep 28, 2017 1:05 PM CST
When humans build houses in the places that the deer live...well, the deer just have to adjust.
We need to learn to live with wildlife.

Plant something for the deer out on the far side of your property. The deer will eat what you offer and may be satisfied to move along to the next yard on the block.

It would help others to answer your questions if they knew where you live. Not the exact address; just a general location would help. Thanks . Thank You!



Sunset Zone 28, AHS Heat Zone 9, USDA zone 8b~"Leaf of Faith"
Name: Gary
Wyoming MN (Zone 4a)
hostasmore
Sep 28, 2017 1:33 PM CST
Here they announced a dramatic increase in the wolf population. One of the key factors? More deer for them to eat. They said the deer census is up also. The problem is there are way too many deer in suburban areas, where they can not be shot.
Name: Karen
NM (Zone 7b)
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plantmanager
Sep 28, 2017 1:41 PM CST
We have way too many deer, and they can be shot during the proper season. I've found there is no way to keep them out except fencing. I've tried all the repellents and different things to spray or sprinkle. Some of them worked a short time, but nothing keeps working.
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Name: Yardenman
Maryland (Zone 7a)
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Yardenman
Sep 28, 2017 1:51 PM CST
greene said:When humans build houses in the places that the deer live...well, the deer just have to adjust.
We need to learn to live with wildlife.

Plant something for the deer out on the far side of your property. The deer will eat what you offer and may be satisfied to move along to the next yard on the block.

It would help others to answer your questions if they knew where you live. Not the exact address; just a general location would help. Thanks . Thank You!


Actually I was here before the deer. In a way. It was a flood plain and then a cow field for nearly a century. I built in the 1980s. Then the swamp receded and the deer moved in AFTER that.

I had no problem with them for 25+ years.

It was just 2 years ago they came in force. I'm thinking some pain will get a fear of humans back into the overgrown rabbits...

A few wire spikes among the hostas to poke their eyes, a few crossbow bolts in the flanks...

Name: Sandy B.
Ford River, Michigan UP (Zone 4b)
(Zone 4b-maybe 5a)
Charter ATP Member I was one of the first 300 contributors to the plant database! Garden Sages Million Pollinator Garden Challenge Seed Starter Vegetable Grower
Greenhouse Region: United States of America Region: Michigan Enjoys or suffers cold winters Butterflies Birds
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Weedwhacker
Sep 28, 2017 6:12 PM CST
My feeling about deer is similar to my feeling about squirrels -- I like them, they are woodland creatures and I live in the woods, and it really isn't that hard to get along. I fence my veg garden, toss stuff out in the woods for the deer that I don't want to eat myself (wormy broccoli, pumpkins and squash that are "past their prime," and so on), I don't expect to be able to grow plants that they particularly have a taste for unless they're protected in some way. For the squirrels, instead of stressing over them getting into the bird feeders, I buy more seed...

I find it rather distressing that someone would be happy to poke the eyes out of a deer... if you can legally hunt them where you are, why not just do so and use them for food?

As for other "vermin" -- I also feel the same way about the mice and chipmunks that occupy our property... they are an occasional inconvenience but they also are woodland creatures that are not purposely causing me any harm. This would be a very sad world to live in, IMO, if all of these beings were only found in zoos -- or not found anywhere at all.

Many years ago I had a discussion with a doctor at the hospital where i worked about deer hunting -- my ex and I hunted and pretty much were able to get all of our red meat for the year that way. The doc was somewhat horrified about hunting the "beautiful deer" and maintained that he only wanted to eat "ugly animals" (such as cattle, apparently). To me, all of these animals are beautiful and I'm willing to take the responsibility for being an omnivore, but really dislike the idea of eliminating wildlife just because it is an "inconvenience."

Getting down off my soapbox now.
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Name: stone
near Macon Georgia (USA) (Zone 8a)
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stone
Sep 29, 2017 7:30 AM CST
Not really woodland critters, are they?
It's my understanding that you get a spike in population by cutting down all the trees..
Nothing they like better than a nice clearcut.

Funny that the doc was offended at the thought of eating beautiful deer....
My favourite vegetable....
People useta ask me what I grew in my garden.....
Deer and rabbits!

Cindy, what are you trying to grow?
Food? Ornamentals?
If food, I've never found anything to work as well as a fence.
One that has been put up right through a nice dense thicket can't be beat.
No thicket?
You may have to go the double fence route, or the fence on top of fence route.
I put one up this year using metal conduit through both sets of wire.
Amazing what they will jump when the numbers get plentiful.

For an ornamental garden, you could try simply digging out anything they eat, and then planting toxic and/or fragrant foliage type plants.

I've never seen a deer eat brugmansia....

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