just saying no to deer, with fencing

front-fence-and-trip-wire-in-sunI GARDENED WITH THE DEER FOR NEARLY A DECADE, and then I said no more. I’d sprayed, sachet-ed, blood-mealed and Milorganite-d myself into a meltdown; I just couldn’t wrap or pen or hang aluminum pie-plate mobiles or otherwise defend individual plants any longer. After all, the deer would just eat whatever wasn’t “protected, ” indiscriminate feeders who were happy to move on to the next course as the previous runs out. So I finally fenced.

Fencing is the only real deer-proofing method there is (assuming your fence is the right construction for your location and animal population, and is well-maintained). No other tactic offers complete control, keeping deer out of the garden.

Even “deerproof” plants had proved deer-resistant at best, and besides, the garden-design limitations such lists impose provide insufferable restriction for someone like me, who can’t resist a hot plant. I’m as much as omnivore as were the deer; we just couldn’t cohabitate peacefully.

The garden’s backbone—its woody plants—were being disfigured. Forget the occasional hosta stripped of its leaves (above); ugly, yes, but it sent up new growth relatively fast. The deer damage to woody plants I’d invested money and then time in (waiting for them to go from $30 youngsters to a real part of the landscape) was mounting fast. Some viburnums, in particular, had taken multiple hits and were beyond corrective-pruning rehab, as were many hollies—two of my favorite genera of shrubs.

The cost exceeded the actual plant-specific losses, too: All those half-effective potions and gadgets, and the time it took to use them, were pricey.

And finally, one day, I looked out the window and realized this: I garden largely to enjoy viewing the landscape I have created, not to view a bunch of vulnerable specimens each encased in their own private cages, like a military encampment of impromptu tents and tee-pees pitched here and there in a time of battle. It was a sad sight. Enough.

Fences That Work

First in my exploration, I turned to scientists and agricultural experts (not garden-product marketers), always my preferred first step. To choose a style of fence that will work for your garden locale, you need information about the local deer species, their habits, and their capabilities (read: how high can they jump, and how low will they go).

eaten-hostas wire-tightener front-fence-detail-2 trip-wire-front-1

Source: awaytogarden.com

Elegant Garden Design Elegant Garden Design Male California Quail Stake, Steel Silhouette with Rusty Patina
Lawn & Patio (Elegant Garden Design)
  • Hand-crafted in the USA
  • Unique decoration for urns, planters, borders, flower, herb, or vegetable beds
  • SKU# S902 - height 7.75 inches, width 7.5 inches
  • Wings can be bent to add even more character and personality
  • Sturdy stake to plant securely

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Most design work is site specific

But you might want to visit the library and check out Keith Davitts book on small space garden design.
I bet he has a website too.
The Sunset series of books is good and I hear that BH+G has a website with some kind of garden plans.
I have never checked it out but have read about it on other gardening forums.

Strawberry fields on my terrace  — Daily News & Analysis
The farm, comprising of small plots (a minimum of 10X10), at Sarjapur Road on the outskirts of Bangalore caters to those living in the city who want to grow their own food. George is at her farm at least once ..

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Vegetable Garden Pictures to Help …
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