Natural Deer Repellent

Natural Deer RepellentGardeners will go to different lengths to use only natural products in their gardens. For some, this means avoiding chemicals that will run off into the water supply and contribute to environmental pollution, while for others this might mean an approach that only involves what grows or occurs in their garden’s native environment. There are a number of natural deer repellents that, depending on one’s gardening needs and philosophies are quite effective at keeping hungry deer from devouring one’s plants and shrubs.

Perhaps the most natural deer repellent is using plants themselves that deter deer. While a very hungry deer will eat almost any type of plant, there are a few rules of thumb for what they like and dislike. In general, deer avoid leaves that are fuzzy, sticky, or prickly. In arid climates, cacti and yucca are popular decorative garden plants that are usually avoided by deer and other plant eating mammals, due to their prickles. In the subtropics, prickly palm trees or holly trees are typically safe from grazing deer for the same reason. Any shrub with prickly leaves is less likely to be eaten by deer.

Several types of flowers are also deer repellent. Daffodils, foxgloves, and geraniums are all less likely to be eaten by deer when other tastier food is available to them, but a hungry enough deer will eat any kind of flower. Fencing and walls are of course the most effective way to keep deer from eating one’s plants. Perimeter fences work well for some back yards, but little fences or tubing can also be used for individual trees that are often damaged not by browsing (feeding) deer, but by the male deer who rub their antlers on the trees. Netting is effective for fruit bushes like raspberries, and helps with other pests like rabbits and birds, too. Fencing and netting may not be considered “natural” to a purist, but a stone wall or wooden fence can be a beautiful and natural addition to any yard when well done, and they prevent the need for sprays and other more unnatural repellents. Water is a complete natural method of fending off deer. Motion detecting sprinkler systems can be purchased online and work day and night to protect up to one thousand square feet of garden. Most deer will run away as soon as the water turns on. An added advantage to the sprinkler is that it will also keep away rabbits and raccoons, who also dislike getting wet. Natural sprays that will repel deer include mixtures of egg and water.

Other natural ingredients are sometimes used in an egg and water mixture. For example, a few drops of olive, canola, or vegetable oil can help the mixture adhere to leaves, and sometimes spices like cinnamon or chili pepper are used to make the mixture taste even more repellent. Natural deer repellent comes in many types, from plants to barriers to sprays. Homeowners looking for a natural deer repellent have a wide variety of options to suit their needs.

Brad

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