Deer control in the Garden Gate test garden
  Re: (0...)
Hi, gardeners!

It's early spring here at the Garden Gate test garden, and the tulips are just starting to push up out of the ground. I know those darned deer smell them from miles away! Late March is when I usually start my annual deer-scaring battle. I'm spraying the tulip foliage with an odor repellent called Liquid Fence right now. You might have read in "Deer Diary" (From the Test Garden, issue 87) how I suggest changing products every few weeks to keep the deer off balance, so I'll be switching to something new in a few weeks.

I find it's very important to start my repellent program early to try to redirect the deer grazing pattern before they get used to coming into our gardens. This weekend, I also brought my dogs into the garden to add a little extra deer fear factor! How are you protecting your plants from deer? I always need more suggestions for keep our garden safe.

Dear Marcia,

Really enjoyed your article! Am an avid gardener with friends who have deer trouble. (I'm either lucky not to have deer, or lucky to have a big dog :-)) I bought a product online called Deervik for them and they say that it works great! You can buy it online at It's a paste that you put on twigs or popsicle sticks and then stick the non-gooey end into the ground. They say it works for a month or so, but then you need to reapply. Rain doesn't wash it away, but it does have a limited life. However, one jar lasts a long time. Would love for you to try it and report on the results.
Best of luck with those pesky garden robbers!
  Re: Deer control in the Garden Gate test garden by MarciaLeeper (Hi, gardeners![br][b...)
I've waited all my life to live in a place where I would have all kinds of wildlife hanging out--especially deer! But I still want my flowers too. I reccommend dried blood (sometimes called "blood meal") no gloves, masks, or goggles needed. It can be found in large and small bags at your local feed and grain store. It's organic, a natural byproduct, doesn't smell that bad to humans, doesn't burn or disfigure even delicate tulip blooms, and is a low-nitrogen fertilizer. It's a dark, rich black-brown like good garden soil. I watched a doe for quite awhile as she stretched her legs, neck, and nose sniffing (but not getting too close to) my flower bed. She, and all the other does and fawns that followed, made a big circle to avoid it. YES, IT TOO HAS TO BE REAPPLIED AFTER A HEAVY RAIN. I've never used anything else and it's worked for almost 40 years now.
  Re: Deer control in the Garden Gate test garden by MarciaLeeper (Hi, gardeners![br][b...)
The best product I've used is Plantskydd. I use the powdered form as it is more economical. Just mix it up, strain thru a panty hose, and use a very fine mist. It usually last 3 months on my hosta, even with rain & irrigation.
  Re: Re: Deer control in the Garden Gate test garden by blanch (The best product I'v...)
I buy Leggs Knee-Highs, cut in half, tie a knot in cut end. Then cut a bar of Ivory Soap into 8 pieces and place a piece in each knee-high. Attach to tree limb with wire, like a Christmas ornament hook. Keep one end open so you can replace soap after rains have worn it down. I also crumlbe up pieces of soap and put around my Hostas and bulbs. The deer do not like it at all and my small, little trees and hostas look GREAT!
  Re: Re: Deer control in the Garden Gate test garden by shaba1212 (I buy Leggs Knee-Hig...)
A little background -- we live on 5 wooded acres that are part of a much larger forest. Directly across the road is a Nature Preserve and wildlife refuge. Our house and garden are situate in a 1-acre clearing. Deer? We are crawling with them!! Also rabbits, groundhogs, and all the other pesky plant-destroying critters.

We have a secret weapon: Dog Hair! We raise show dogs, and brush shed out of their long hair. We save it in bags (clean hair doesn't work as well as dirty) and during the growing season drape it through branches, ball it around stems, dig some in with bulbs. We share some with my fellow Master Gardeners, and have found that for those with greater problems, the hair from our central vacuum is never-fail. (probably because it often contains the magic ingredient we vacuum up when the carpet is cleaned: puppy pee [img]/ubbthreads/images/graemlins/blush.gif[/img]) Give it a try -- double coated, longhaired dogs work for their living!
Pat & the Tibetans in MD, zone 6b
Pat, in rural Maryland
zone 6b
Master Gardener

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