Deer are gentle, majestic creatures. They can also destroy your garden.
Are you fed up with deer feeding on your plants and flowers? It doesn’t have to be a losing battle. Use these New Jersey deer control tips to protect your garden this year.
1. Keep the plants deer love closest to home
Deer love plants that are smooth and full of flavor. This list includes berry bushes, roses, azaleas and chrysanthemums. Keep these plants close to your home to keep an eye on them.
2. Use strong scents to throw them off
Like a lot of animals, deer count on their sense of smell to find food. By planting strongly scented herbs – such as garlic, mint or lavender – you can throw them off the trail of your annual plants.
3. A thorny issue
Deer may hunt for food based on smell, but they’ll still be chased away by certain textures. Putting fuzzy or thorny plants – lamb’s ear, barberries, cleome – near the plants you want to protect can help take them off the menu.
4. Scare them off
Scarecrows aren’t just for farmers. Deer are scared of unfamiliar objects. Things like scarecrows, or garden decorations such as sundials, will make them uneasy. Consider adding wind chimes to complete the effect.
5. Light up the yard
Deer aren’t fans of bright lights, which is why they’ll wait until dark to snack on your plants. Putting up motion-activated floodlights can scare them off, although they may eventually come to realize the lights are harmless.
6. All they can eat?
There’s a difference between tempting deer with a snack and offering them a buffet. Think twice about growing substantial amounts of vegetables and fruits such as lettuces, beans, peas and strawberries, as well as flowers like impatiens, pansies and hostas.
7. Fishing line
Have some fishing line handy? String it around your plant beds about two or three feet about ground. This invisible barrier will confuse them and send them on their way.
8. They can’t eat what they can’t see
If deer can’t get a glimpse of what you have growing in your garden, they’ll be less likely to go exploring. Surrounding your garden with large, deer-repellent hedges – think boxwoods or short-needled spruce – will go a long way towards keeping deer away.
9. Man’s (and plants’) best friend
If you have a dog, you have a method of controlling deer. Let your dog out while you’re working in the garden, or when your kids are playing in the backyard. It doesn’t matter if it’s a mastiff or a pug: deer will be scared off by your pooch’s scent and its bark.
10. Put up a fence
When all else fails, put up a fence. It’s the most effective method of keeping deer out. But remember that deer can jump, so make sure your fence is at least eight feet high.
If you’re looking for other New Jersey deer control options, Mendham Garden Center can help. We carry several deer control products, from liquid repellents such as Deer Stopper and Deer Out to more permanent solutions like welded wire, vinyl-coated wire and metal posts.
Visit us online or at one of our three locations to find a product that will protect your yard this year.