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Deer Control

posted Aug 21, 2011, 1:49 PM by Stacey M   [ updated Aug 21, 2011, 2:53 PM ]
On average deer consume 5 pounds of vegetation each day. Needless to say, that can be detrimental do your garden and landscaping. Deer are especially a problem in suburban areas where it is illegal to hunt and there is no population control. So here are a few tips that may help repel them from your plants and back into the fields. However do remember that deer are creatures of habit, they will continue to revisit the same areas as long as they find food there. If you chose to use a spray a heavy rain will wash it away and you must reapply it. Keep in mind you are changing their habit so you must to be persistent in your tactics to repel them. 

Garden and Landscaping Spray. Combine the following ingredients: 
  •  1 whole eggs 
  • 1/4 water 
  • 1 cup vinegar 
  • 1/2 cup diced hot pepper OR 1 head chopped garlic 

Pour the mixture into a pump bottle, let set overnight then spray on plants. The egg will make the mixture stick to the plants and the strong oils from the garlic or hot pepper will repel nibblers. If you feel the mixture is not sticking add more egg, since egg sizes and moisture vary. Note that the stronger the smell of the hot pepper, garlic or vinegar the better it is for your mixture. On that note, you can also use just vinegar, however I suggest only doing so if you have a very strong white vinegar to use. When working with hot peppers please remember to use gloves!

For this mixture use the hottest peppers you have available and leave the seeds in. The seeds of the hot pepper is where the spiceiness comes from. Dice them up to release the oils in your vinegar. Note that when it comes to garlic, the smaller and whiter the garlic the more pungent it will be. The more fine it is chopped the more oil it releases and more pungent the aroma in your mixture. 

Note: Do NOT spray vinegar on canalopes! They will turn grey on the outside. It does not hurt the melon but it does make it look strange.

Another spray suggestion is to combine the following:
  • 1 cup milk 
  • 2 gallons water 
  • 2 whole eggs 
  • 2 tablespoon cooking oil 
  • 2 tablespoon liquid detergent 

Other Methods:

Some orchards hang bars of soap from their trees. They do not like the smell of a perfumed soap and will then leave it alone. The rain and humidity will keep the fragrance around all summer long. 

I have heard that human hair is a deer repellant. It is suggested that you stuff hair into a cheesecloth sack and hang it from a tree, it will repel the deer because they think people are around. However in a suburban area especially most deer are used to people now and will generally get pretty close to them for food. 

You can hang empty milk jugs around to keep deer at bay. They do not like the noise they make in the breeze. I suppose this would also work with used soup cans as well. However they do eventually get used to these noises and it may only work for a short period of time.

***If you do get the hot pepper oil on your hands rub them with dish soap, leave the dish soap on for approximately 20-30 minutes then wash your hand thoroughly, it will take the burn away. Moisturize well after doing so.