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April 03, 2013 3 min read
“Natural” may mean something different to each person asked. So the best natural deer repellent may be a different solution for each gardener who wants to prevent their flowers and other plant from becoming a smorgasbord for a voracious deer family.
For some, keeping a garden natural means using nothing but plants in it. The easiest and best natural deer repellent for these purists is water. Motion-detecting sprinklers can be purchased online or in stores at a reasonable price. They are easy to set up, and they work by turning on a sprinkler when motion is detected. These deer deterrents will keep the deer and rabbits away, but may also spray whatever else triggers the detector, even humans. Depending on a homeowner’s situation, these can be an excellent way to deter deer, but they may not be idea for gardeners living in areas with water use restrictions, or on garden paths with high human foot traffic.
For some gardeners, the best natural deer repellent is a solution of egg and water. Completely organic, this solution will fit most gardener’s definition of “natural,” although one could point out that eggs are not naturally occurring in gardens. To make an effective deer deterrent from egg and water, one egg should be mixed with one gallon (or less, if a stronger mixture is deemed necessary) of water and sprinkled on the plants that need to be protected from deer. The solution can be made in a few ways.
Some recent studies have suggested that using egg solid, or cooked egg, can be more effective than using raw egg. Mixing a finely chopped cooked egg into a gallon of water and letting it sit outside for at least an hour will allow the egg to begin its purification process. Deer will avoid eating any plants that smell eggy, because they are natural vegetarians, so the stronger the mixture smells, the better it will work. Deer have a much more sensitive sense of smell than humans, so even if the mixture does not smell very much to us, the deer will be able to smell it, and avoid eating it.
Scare tactics are natural, but not always reliable. A good watch dog can go a long way to scaring away deer, but even watch dogs need a nap sometimes. Motion-detecting sound makers and not usually rated very high in their effectiveness but can be bought to make noises ranging from a guard dog bark to an annoying high-pitched squeal to drive away pests.
Other natural deer repellents include coyote or wolf urine, or blood meal as fertilizer. The coyote and wolf urine are often looked down upon as less effective than the egg and water mixture, and less humane. Blood meal is a natural byproduct from the butchering process and can be purchased at gardening stores for fertilizer. It keeps deer away for the same reason that the egg and water mixture does.
Although there are quite a few deer deterrents that can be thought of as natural, the best natural deer repellent for its all-natural ingredient is the motion detecting sprinkler system, followed closely by the egg and water mixture.
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