deer resistance

Deer, Landscape Plants, and the Winter of 2018

Deer damage arborvitae

Will landscape plants see lots of deer damage in the winter of 2018? Could be . . . and here's a reason: The preceding summer didn't produce a large crop of acorns and nuts from oak and beech trees. In other words, 2017 wasn't a "mast year."

During mast years, trees supercharge the output of acorns and nuts—apparently by agreement among themselves. It’s an unpredictable phenomenon that occurs in three- to five-year cycles. The trees seem to communicate among their kind, oak to oak and beech to beech. To make it even more mysterious,  masting is regional. It can be a mast year in one part of the state and not another.

Close the Door at the Deer Cafe

Take your landscape off the deer cafe menu
Ever wish you could un-invite the deer from your garden? It's not easy, but there are ways. 
An acquaintance of mine uses outdated plastic CDs above her vegetable garden to deter both deer and birds. Deer are leary of shiny, nearby objects that move. This strategy takes advantage of the animal's poor ability to see items close-up and its tendency to startle easily the first time it sees something.
But remember that deer are quick to become accustomed to anything--so move the CDs every week or so, and add some wind chimes for an added source of surprise. Good luck!
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