Do deer eat gourds?
Do deer eat gourds? deer eats pumpkins, so it’s okay to wonder if they also eat gourds. In this article, we will talk about deer feeding habits concerning gourds.
We often cultivate gourds for decorative purposes. Gourds like cucumbers, squash, and watermelon make up the Cucurbitaceae family. However, they are different from pumpkin and acorn squash, which we usually grow for food.
We can eat some gourds species, especially the seeds (e.g., Buffalo gourds). However, they commonly make a natural part of our autumnal centerpieces. Cultivating gourds is also a great way to add color and style to our gardens. According to some experts, gourds are excellent for beginner gardeners looking to grow something great that won’t succumb to diseases or insects. Nonetheless, some animals can eat gourds. Therefore, you may wonder – do deer eat gourds?
Will deer eat gourds?
There is no straight answer to this question. Deer do not like the hard rubbery exterior of gourds. However, they will happily snack on the seeds inside. So, you may likely find holes in your gourds. Deer can also eat the tips of the vines with flowers and leaves of the gourd plant. You can also spot their handiwork through the raggedly torn stems. No one wants to have deer in their gardens. So you need to protect your gourds from deer damage. Here are some ways you can prevent deer from wreaking havoc in your gardens.
Fencing is an effective way to keep deer out of your garden. Although you can choose traditional fencing, the more popular choice today is electric fencing. Also, note that your fence shouldn’t allow deer to find a way around, underneath, or by climbing through. If you have the funds, install a fence with horizontal wires spaced 10 – 30 inches off the ground. It would help if you also considered a behavior modification technique alongside your fencing to make them more useful. All you need do is create a bait made with food that will attract them. Place this somewhere on the fence. When they try to eat the bait, they will receive an electric shock, which will stop them from attempting to go over the fence.
Plastic bird netting
You can also consider using plastic bird netting supported by 8-inch wire hoops. This can protect your gourds from deer and squirrels alongside. Do note that some vines may grow out of this covering, making them edibles for deer. Still, your gourd will be protected from their browsing. Do note that this method is only effective if you have just a few gourds. You can also use chicken wire in place of plastic netting.
Keep your garden busy
Consider adding a motion-activation sprinkler and sonic device that releases a blast of noise. This can scare them out of the area. However, this method only works for a while and should be used to complement other approaches.
Do Deer eat gourds? Not really, Deer do not like the hard exterior of gourds, but they like the seeds. Therefore, you may find that deer have created massive holes in your gourds to get to the seeds.
Of course, you can prevent these terrible deer damage by using the methods we have outlined above. However, do ensure that you are using a combination of these methods to keep deer away.