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January 29, 2021 2 min read
Do deer eat kale? If you want to plant veggies on your properly, kale might be an excellent choice, except for the deer factor.
Kale is a versatile garden plant and member of the Brassica family just like Brussels sprouts, cabbage, and broccoli. It is grown on raised beds, containers, and traditional beds. It is also a multipurpose vegetable, and nutritious addition to our casseroles, stir-fries, salads, omelets, and many other culinary recipes. Despite being highly nutritious, many also grow them as ornaments because of their vibrant shades of colors and textures. It’s also acknowledged as a cool-season vegetable, because once mature, it should handle frosty weather. However, pests are your major concern. While you may have a list that already includes cabbage aphids, flea beetles, and cabbage worms, deer may also come to mind. Those four-legged creatures eat almost everything, but do they eat kale?
However, we don’t recommend using motion activated sprinklers as a deterrent. Although kale requires a decent supply of water, you may end up over watering your plants, if they turn on everything Bambi wanders in your direction. Instead, opt for deer deterrents that turn on lights, or emit sounds. Do realize that over time, deer will adjust to the threats. To keep them unsettled, mix up your scare tactics.
Fencing is also a reliable way to keep deer out of your garden. Make sure it’s about 8 to 10 feet tall. You can also use a stockade or double fence of about 5 to 6ft. Most people don’t like wooden fence because it spoils the beauty of the natural landscape. So, you can opt for a wire fence of about 8 feet. Also, ensure that your fence reaches the ground to discourage deer from going underneath it. Electric fencing is also a great choice. Check with your zoning laws to see if you are allowed to use one.
Another fencing solution you can consider is a tall plastic mesh fence which will provide a sort of invisible-to-the-eye barrier. Make sure to get the heavier ones, so that a desperate or frightened deer will not knock them down and become entangled in them.
Odor and taste repellents are also excellent to keep deer away. You can create some at home, but they don’t work well after only a few days. A high-quality commercial deer repellent will offer at least a week’s protection, but you have to apply regularly or after it rains. It’s often better to alternate between two repellents to prevent deer from becoming familiar with the smell and taste.
Do deer eat kale? Yes, they do, although not as their most favorite food source. Deer can cause undue damage to your kale plants, by eating them to the ground. Therefore, you need to stop deer from eating in your garden. No deer deterrent method is absolutely good, so mixing about two or three is exactly right. When you can effectively keep them out of your garden, you can look forward to a bountiful kale harvest free of four-legged devours.
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