I beg your pardon, I didn’t mean to eat the whole garden

So sang Lynn Anderson when she heard about today’s events.

The deer won’t go.

Won’t go?

No. It is now officially their garden and they are eating it.

At least this one has the decency to look a little guilty.untitled-47

Not so this bruiser. So what’s your problem, guv’nor? You staring at me?untitled-56OK, I’ll turn a blind eye, just this once.Roebuck eye problemBut would you leave with this little cutie in oestrus? Anyway, what’s a few Azaleas between friends?untitled-49

Of course they have not just eaten the Azaleas but lots of other prize specimens too. We fear for Mrs. Ha’s new Camellia and my new Winter Honeysuckle. In the meantime Buck and Doe have gone behind the bushes (again). Gardening was never supposed to be like this.

Next time I’ll write (if I remember) about how to get yourself stung by wasps whilst emptying a moth trap.

Your still in pain gardening correspondent.

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39 thoughts on “I beg your pardon, I didn’t mean to eat the whole garden

  1. We have a bevy of deer or whatever. I can’t really grow anything. The deer just sit and stare at me like I am on their property and bug off you human.

    • Yes they are rather snooty. No sense of community spirit. Every deer for him/herself. Not sure about bevy. We need a colllective noun expert.

    • Good idea Ilex. I shall ask them to fill out a feedback card:

      Which of Andrew’s plants did you enjoy most?
      What would make you return regularly to this restaurant?
      How did you find the service standards?
      How do you rate the hygiene standards?

      • Terrible idea~the extra calories helps them have larger numbers of babies, and encourages them to flock to your garden. At the Chicago Botanic Garden they use black string strung around their prize specimens, like a spider web. The deer can’t see it and when they brush against it they spook and stay away.

  2. Even with pleasure there should be a battle
    If the wasp can’t sting or the deer can’t feast
    Then why should you be totally at peace
    You got to loose a few in order to score a goal
    What you put a team together and its win,win
    Wake up and smell the deer droppings

  3. Blinky looks pretty comfortable relaxing there. You could try a mixture of hot pepper powder and water, Andrew. We use that occasionally to discourage pests. It just washes away with the rain unfortunately and requires several applications before they get the idea. We also used little tubes of coyote and fox urine for a disagreeable scent that kept small mammals away from our blueberries. We do have both wandering around the neighborhood, but they just ignored the medical sample jars we left for their convenience so purchase a jugful at the garden center.

    • I suppose we could import a coyote Steve or try the hot pepper powder and water. I have not seen the deer yet this morning but they may be lying up in the area right at the back. We do have a fox but it doesn’t stay – just passes through.

  4. A North American commenter on one of my postings said her father used to pee around the perimeters of her mother’s garden to deter the deer. May I therefore suggest… um…

  5. The joys of country living, eh? I’d rather have the deer in the garden and to hell with the plants but my neighbour is fanatical, using every anti deer device known to man. She even bought lion’s dung from Marwell Zoo once. It didn’t work, just in case you were thinking of paying the zoo a visit. Wasps I could do without. What purpose do they serve, actually?

    • Marwell is very close by. My late brother’s garden was so close he could hear the lions roaring. Wasps control other insect nuisances and do have a role to play but sadly once they arrive in numbers they are a real nuisance themselves. This was the first time this year I was stung.

  6. You need a good Jack Russell, Andrew. Ours is sitting up all night on possum watch. I am sure it is the answer. On the other hand all creatures small and large…What happened to the rabbits?

  7. Isn’t mother nature wonderful! How many others can say they have deer in their garden? Or even have a garden? Enjoy the trust of the wild animals and maybe you could start a sideline in selling wildlife photos?! Every cloud and all that…..!!

  8. I think your answer lies in shelling out a few thousand to fence your property. You can not beat the deer, they love domestic gardens- the foliage is so much tastier than what’s growing in the wild.

    • I am having a discussion on doing so this afternoon Yvonne. The back is already considered ‘stock proof’ but the deer just walk down the driveway!

  9. Take a deep breath, Andrew, shake it loose, smile, picture Bambi at his cutest and accept it. As we’ve learned, once the deer discover your assortment of goodies, it becomes theirs. For the past two years we’ve deterred the deer and semi-protected our blueberry bushes, Azaleas, and the little zucchini, kale and lettuce garden with a spray we brought at the nursery: Deer Away. It’s very effective, but it also smells like rotten eggs, so it’s a trade off. 😉

    • Well they have left for now Marylin. I am not sure how easy it is to find deer deterrent sprays here as it is not a common problem. I think fencing is a better long term option especially as fences don’t (normally) smell of rotten eggs.

  10. Aaargh! I feel for you. Years ago I worked on the private garden of an estate. Everything I planted was munched by rabbits or deer. I planted more chicken wire than greenery and it was very dispiriting. Deer like things new and fresh, so if you can protect shrubs until they are tough and not so tasty they will survive. I would certainly fence of any areas where you positively want to garden… sharing might be the watchword, their patch – your patch.

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