If you’ve been a homeowner in this area (Chevy Chase, Bethesda, Rockville, Potomac) for more than a few years, you’ve probably seen your fair share of deer in the yard. Pretty as they may be, these creatures can do (and may have already done) significant damage to your plants. Even more alarming is the fact they usually carry Lyme disease ticks, a potential threat to you, your family and your pets.
So how can you effectively keep deer away from your yard and garden? Unfortunately, there may not be a surefire way to consistently eliminate them; however, there are a few tricks that can successfully deter these four-legged feeders. Not to mention they can also assist in protecting your landscaping investment.
In the short-term, you should consider planting items that deer are less likely to eat. If you’re already missing a few species from your outdoor area, you probably know about some of the plants and flowers that they do like. Some deer favorites include tulips, laurel, forsythia, Japanese yew, crocus and pansies.
Luckily, there are many alternatives that deer do not seem to be interested in, which includes: salvia, iris, yucca, English holly, daisies, tiger lilies, wisteria, bougainvillea, yarrow, iris, geraniums, narcissus and dahlias. These are all plants that deer do not particularly care about chewing on. Choose your plants wisely.
Even with careful planting, deer will eat almost anything if they are hungry enough. Tomato plants are not typically favored; however, some homeowners in the western states have seen their plants cleaned right off. The best you can do is try different plants and see what works for you.
In part 2 of this series, we’ll discuss how you can enhance these results by developing a long-term plan to follow up your gardening efforts. The combination of the two will help you keep your property off deer radar and allow you to enjoy the time and money that you’ve invested in your outdoor environment.