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Deer protection

Discussion in 'Edible Gardening' started by silu, May 12, 2018.

  1. silu

    silu gardening easy...hmmm

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    Wonder if anybody can recommend something to stop the deer eating my over wintering vegetables.
    Last season I have a :ideaIPB: regarding the "gap" you tend to get between finishing the previous seasons vegetables and the new seasons being ready. I read about Purple Sprouting Broccoli and thought that seemed a very good idea to fill the "gap".
    Well yes it would have been if it hadn't been for the herd of damned bambis who decided to take up night quarters here:wallbanging: and scoffed most of my Broccoli along with various other things too numerous to mention!
    I lost probably 90% of the Brocolli to deer but a few have managed to sprout, ha ha, into life and jolly tasty it is too. I wasn't so far wrong with the idea but have the ongoing issue of unwelcome visitors. I have tried all the (useless) deterrents but if the deer are hungry enough any amount of human hair draped about the place etc etc etc has zero effect. A small piece of lead between the ears I believe works:) but have absolutely no intention of being that drastic. I was wondering about some sort of netting type cage. It wouldn't need to be incredibly strong, just enough to put them off so they go and eat the likes of my Camellias, sigh, instead. It would need to be sturdy enough tho to withstand all that winter would throw at it. I'd want something of about 15 ft x 10ft x 5ft roughly. I might also plant some Swede in the cage as that went for a burton thanks to the deer as well. I could use long canes and something like stronger gauge pea netting but don't think just sticking 8ft canes in the ground would stand up to winter.
     
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    • kazzawazza

      kazzawazza Total Gardener

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      The British Deer Society recommends installing an odour-based deterrent to ward deer off tempting plants. Their suggestions include diesel-soaked cloth strips, muslin bags of human hair :yikes: or urine :eeew: among vegetables and once you’ve grappled with the implications of collecting the contents of your shower drain and instructing any males of the family to wee on your plot, you then face the depressing reality that this form of protection is only going to last as long as it takes for the British weather to do what it does best - tip down with rain.

      Better, according to other sources, to get a few bars of soap, push them onto some bamboo sticks and stick them in the ground around the plants you wish to protect.

      Alternatively, you could put up a fence of deer netting. Create wire or mesh cages to protect individual plants or vegetables but be sure to cover the top of the cage as well. Protect trees from rubbing damage with protective trunk wrap, sold at garden centers.
       
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        Last edited: May 12, 2018
      • kazzawazza

        kazzawazza Total Gardener

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      • silu

        silu gardening easy...hmmm

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        Your kindly given suggestions are a complete and utter waste of time in my experience @kazzawazza :rolleyespink: I expect the British Deer Society is about as practical as The British Horse Society. Unfortunately these societies are mainly run by what my granny would call well meaning arses!
        Had lots of soap on sticks 2 seasons ago. Results nul point as per The Euorvision Song Contest:). We are not talking pretty little deer here, we are talking large mostly male arrangements with antlers and they are very hungry by the time they decide to venture onto my land. They stripped a bank of Ivy about 40 ft long and 4ft high of every leaf in a night's sitting! If I could win the Lottery I would erect deer fencing but with 8 acres to protect you are talking megga money for fencing high enough to do the job. Many thanks for trying to help and no doubt the measures might work in a very small area and with slightly less precocious deer! Last winter 1 was on our patio staring into the sitting room about 7 o'clock in the morning. I'm not sure who got the bigger fright when we eyeballed each other, I think I did!
         
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        • Victoria

          Victoria Lover of Exotic Flora

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          @silu, what a disasterous problem to have :rolleyespink: ... I would love to have bambis in my garden, please send them to me post-haste! :imphrt: In the meantime, shame about the brocoli, I love it with home-made blue cheese sauce.
           
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          • pete

            pete Growing a bit of this and a bit of that....

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            Send me some deer , weed killer dont work on Ivy.:biggrin:
            Just joking, it must be a big problem, but I wish I had 8 acres.:blue thumb:
             
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            • kazzawazza

              kazzawazza Total Gardener

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              Everything in my post is only what’s on the internet.

              I was only trying to help, because that’s what GC members do.
               
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                Last edited: May 12, 2018
              • CanadianLori

                CanadianLori Ever Hopeful Canuck

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                @silu can you afford the fencing just around the perimeter of your people food areas?

                Short of covering everything in cold frames, I can't think of anything practical and economical in the fencing line.

                I have a thing that attaches to the hose and sprays down anything that sets off its heat sensors but fat lot of good that would do you with me being 3,500 miles away. If you can get your hands on one of those, it might be a cheap solution.
                 
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                • silu

                  silu gardening easy...hmmm

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                  Does Broccoli and blue cheese sauce go well with venison @Victoria ;):). We had 5 "boys" here over winter and until just recently as, "what the ....... happened to my herbaceous border, oh deer did!" occurred about 2 weeks ago. Their departure coincided with the grass really beginning to grow. The big problem is that deer around here are not culled. I am 100% an animal lover but it is not good husbandry to allow numbers of deer to get to the point where there is not enough food for them to survive during the winter without resorting to fairly desperate measures. It's often during the winter that many get hit and killed on the roads as the deer are desperately looking for food.
                   
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                  • CanadianLori

                    CanadianLori Ever Hopeful Canuck

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                    1526130267629.jpg
                    You can fix it to spray almost 360 degrees and it has an option to attach a second hose and another unit further along and so on. You just leave good pressure on the line and it does the rest.
                     
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                    • Irmemac

                      Irmemac Total Gardener

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                      Hi @silu, I have had deer trouble whenever it is a harsh winter, so can imagine how frustrating it must be - what a pity they weren't into celery :roflol:. Anyway, I think you are probably onto a good idea, but it'll be tricky to get something to withstand the Scottish winter, and I think you probably get it worse than over my side. I've found this online: Aluminium Fruit Cages - Harrod Horticultural (UK) which looks like perhaps the kind of thing you would want. Not sure what size you would want, but it might even give you an idea of how to construct one of your own.
                       
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                      • Victoria

                        Victoria Lover of Exotic Flora

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                        Hi @silu Venison (veado) is a very popular dish here, either cooked in steak form but usually slowed cooked in a stew, which is very tasty ... that is saying something from a basically non meat eating person. It is served with thin sliced fried potatoes. The Portuguese are sadly lacking in vegetable side dishes although freshly available here. I imagine the broccoli blue cheese would be lovely with it.

                        I believe culling is necessary in certain circumstances.
                         
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                        • shiney

                          shiney President, Grumpy Old Men's Club Staff Member

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                          Those cages are very good but I'm sure there are other makes as well. You can also get cages that are only about 1m high. They mean a lot more bending but are a lot cheaper.
                           
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                          • silu

                            silu gardening easy...hmmm

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                            Thanks everybody. Oh these look the job @Irmemac......love your remark about celery well remembered:). However, there is 1 smallish snag, the price ouch:). If I was about 30 years younger I'd consider buying the biggest I could afford but getting somewhat long in the tooth I don't know how much longer I will be able to keep doing quite so much vegetable wise. I might call on daughter's bf who amongst other things is an engineer, maybe he could build me something similar.
                            Your idea is good too @CanadianLori but unfortunately we are on private water. heavenly to drink but pretty dreadful pressure,not enough to make your idea effective unfortunately. We have about 8 acres here which is fenced with normal post and wire. deer just pop over it:rolleyespink:. Deer fencing needs to be about 8 ft I think and would cost a fortune to put up hence my remark about needing to win The Lottery before being able to deer proof where we live!
                            I remember the times I have been in Portugal @Victoria that there was a distinct lack of vegetables offered in the restaurants other than salad which did surprise me. Ok the South might be tricky to grow many vegetables being hot and dry but not quite so much the North but perhaps I am wrong.
                            My only concern about the cages is birds. Do you think they would get tangled in the netting? Any personal knowledge @shiney? We have 100s of them here and I so enjoy their presence, I'd hate to be the cause of any fatalities. Perhaps I should give in and head for the supermarket next early season and let the professionals grow some vegetables for me:)
                             
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                            • martin-f

                              martin-f Plant Hardiness Zone 8b

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                              Sell 4 acres 20 grand should buy you a nice fence.
                               
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