Deterring Deer in Your Garden

I tend to see deer in my garden more in winter than summer.

I tend to see deer in my garden more in winter than summer.

Deterring Deer In Your Garden

Deer in particular get a bad rap, especially since some have a taste for our gardens. Tulips and hostas seem to be a favorite treat, according to ladies I meet when I talk to clubs. I have tried all of the standard deer-repelling suggestions from placing soap and hair around garden beds to a fertilizer made from a Wisconsin sewer system.

My current technique is to keep deer at the edge of my woods-surrounded property with a salt block and periodic servings of corn. I don’t recommend that for more developed areas.

One husband sent me this email about a deer pen he built that did the trick:

“The most critical dimension is the width of 10 feet. Our pen is 65 feet long, but any length should actually work. The two long sides are made from cattle panels of ¼ inch wire mesh of 6 inches by 8 inches. Each panel is 48 inches tall and 16 feet long. These panels are attached to steel tee posts placed 5.5 feet apart to form two long sides that are 10 feet apart.

"I used 12 foot metal gates for the ends just because they were available. They hang over a little , but the deer don’t seem to mind. The 10 foot spacing side to side has so far never allowed a deer to jump in. If they did try it, they would probably crash into the side opposite to the side they had jumped. Also, we put 18 inch high chicken wire around the bottom of the ends and both sides. It is just tied on the ends so that after moving the gates I can use a tiller inside the pen. This keeps out the rabbits and turtles.

We have had this setup a long time. It took some labor and material to build it, but it has been worth it. Now we can raise green beans, okra, lettuce, etc. without having it eaten.”

Do you think this will work? Have you tried it?