Tuesday, August 28, 2007

Why I Can’t Garden On This Property

These two adult deer and the fawn were in my yard the other day. I ran to get the camera to take a photo to illustrate why I can’t garden here. They ran to my neighbor’s yard. So here they are in my neighbor’s yard. It was dusk and overcast, and it had recently rained, so the photo is a bit dark.

Last night I was driving on the road that leads to my street. There in a field were these same two adult deer and the fawn. In the past I would have oooh’ed and aaah’ed at the beauty of nature. However to be very honest with five cases of Lyme Disease between the four members in my family here and with one other tick-borne illness, I no longer love the deer. To be blunt, I am also really missing gardening and just would love to get back to organic flower and vegetable gardening. However these creatures ruin it for us. They eat the plants and they carry diseased ticks. Sorry to say I hate deer now.

(I know right now one of my friends who is reading this is cringing at my negativity. Sorry. But I know you have your lovely flowers and heirloom homegrown tomatoes and I don’t have that same opportunity, so please try to feel some pity for me.)


Christina said...

Is fencing prohibitive for some reason? My mother-in-law has gardened vegetables for decades in deer-populated neighborhoods and she always encloses her space with a tall deer fence...

Nothing to do about the tick illnesses though - is your family recovered from those or do they remain chronic?

Alisha said...

I've heard (from an agriculture professor in deer-infested WV), that if you make a solution of 1/2 skim milk and 1/2 water and spray it on the leaves of your plants, the deer won't eat it. Reapply every month or after heavy rain, whichever comes first.

They also tend to avoid lavender, so you can ring your garden with that.

My mom had a terrible deer problem (so bad that I didn't know hostas bloomed until I went to college). She says her solution this year has worked amazingly well. She set fence posts around her garden, about 4' tall, and then strung fishing line around them. The deer could probably jump it, but they can't see it to figure out how high they might need to jump. It's not the prettiest thing, but she's had a better garden than ever this summer.

Good luck.