While we all know that deer will eat anything if they are hungry enough, there are plenty of plants they don’t generally care for. It’s entirely possible to create a deer resistant garden with trees, shrubs, ferns, grasses and perennials that will be less likely to see damage from deer browsing.
While browsing damage does not usually kill the plants it definitely stresses them and makes them unsightly. To deal with the problem there are basically four ways to deter deer browsing.
Probably the easiest way to deter deer browsing is through the use of repellents. There are a number of chemical and organic repellents available that work both by taste and smell. It is important when using repellents to realize that they must be applied more than once during the winter. It is also beneficial to change products since the deer can get used to one and as food becomes scarce they are less likely to be deterred.
NOISE AND ANIMALS:
Deer are very nervous creatures. A dog which has the ability to run thru the yard or unusual sounds such as wind chimes may be enough to stop the deer. While this is a temporary solution it may be enough to change their route in the future.
Adding a fence in your yard or garden is the surest way of keeping deer from dining on your plants. If it is just a hedge or foundation planting putting up a temporary mesh barrier will probably suffice. For more permanent protection or larger areas a heavy plastic barrier or electrified wire fence may be necessary. It is important to realize that deer are able to jump extremely high, up to 12 feet. In the event there is one or two shrubs in the yard that need protection wrapping with burlap may suffice.
It is important to realize that deer have preferences in their food just as we do. There are certain plants that are practically deer magnets. Realizing what they are and protecting them many times cause the deer to change their feeding route.
Deer Resistant Plants:
- Blue Star Juniper
- Blue Rug Juniper
- Arrowwood Viburnum
- Butterfly Bush
- Russian Sage
- Common Boxwood