Every year I love to garden, watching beautiful plants emerge from small, tiny seeds is such a joy. There is no other feeling quite like walking through a yard enjoying the emerging flowers with their bright colors and sweet scents, or in visiting the vegetable garden to pick fresh produce for dinner or a snack. However, after spending all that time and work putting in a garden, to then go out and see that it’s gone because a deer has come through, is heart-wrenching.
How to keep deer out of garden? That has been the ultimate question for decades within my family. When I was younger I would watch my dad get up early in the morning with a shot gun for noise to keep watch over our garden plot. Then in the evenings he would make sure that we played ball outside until it got dark, just so that we’d make enough noise to keep the deer away. However, try as we might they would always sneak in and eat our growing plants.
Then one year my dad got the idea that a fence was the best solution. So, he got all the materials and spent the good part of a month digging holes and putting up a fence. Now the first fence was six feet tall, thinking that nothing could come through. However, soon after it was finished my dad learned that deer like to jump. So, the next year he increased the size to ten feet, but still they got over. Then came netting over the top of the ten foot fence thinking this would be the ultimate protection. However, don’t ask me how, but they still managed to get in. The deer still had him beat.
As I got older, moved away, and began plotting my own garden experience, I started to question the best natural pest control out there. Noise didn’t seem to help nor did fences. So, what would? I started my search. I went to garden sites and garden clubs, read every garden book that I could get my hands on, and even took extension courses through the college about gardening. And from all that research I learned that deer are very sensitive to smells and tastes. They’ll leave the garlic alone but will eat the lettuce. If you put strong smelling scents on or around your plants the deer will stay away.
Now, to find the right mixture of elements that will do the trick, and to find something that won’t wash off whenever it rains. Then my focus can go to enjoying my garden rather than worrying about it being destroyed.