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Mid-South Gardening: keeping deer intruders out of my gardens

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babybluesntn
Hendersonville, TN
(Zone 7b)

March 21, 2010
4:45 PM

Post #7646258

Can anyone tell me how high a fence has to be in order to prevent deer from jumping it? I'm putting one in this summer to keep the deer from ruining my gardens. I'll be using white vinyl but I don't want to have to put it privacy fence height. Thanks!
Karen
missingrosie
Hillsborough, NC

March 21, 2010
5:15 PM

Post #7646353

I read 10 feet more than any other number. But you will find that lots of folks have different opinions on this. The general rule is ...if it is a big space they will try to jump pretty high heights. If it is a small enclosed space - less likely to try to jump and you can go lower in height. I thought about a standard material wooden fence built to a low height for aesthetics and the addition of horizontal steel cable or another kind of more open-appearing fence material on top of the bottom fencing to complete the 'height' requirement. It is an expensive undertaking.
babybluesntn
Hendersonville, TN
(Zone 7b)

March 21, 2010
5:22 PM

Post #7646377

Yes, it looks like its going to be expensive...did a google search for the ? and found alot of answers on the Garden Web. Most say 8' but I don't want to go that high. I think 4-5' and get a dog! Thanks!
missingrosie
Hillsborough, NC

March 21, 2010
5:45 PM

Post #7646451

I know I searched too. Found all sorts of answers about height. 10 came from the sites that I thought were the more likely to be accurate (landscape designers, gardening nurseries, public institutions (arboretums etc.) - also learned how the darn things JUMP (the hoof makeup) and their poison tasting abilities.. really evolved to live in the wild.

Dogs are good to scare but you have to leave them out all night for it to work (prime picking time!) Our dog lived inside at night. Someone here on DG (I forget who) mentioned that she left outside speaker on to a talk show all night and it worked really well.
kathy_ann
Judsonia, AR
(Zone 7b)

March 22, 2010
10:00 AM

Post #7647838

The 4 or 5 and getting a dog is a good idea LOL you'll be spending a fortune to keep those deer out. But getting a pup is going to cause damage to your yard too . Full grown dogs aren't nearly as bad at tearing out plants as pups are.
babybluesntn
Hendersonville, TN
(Zone 7b)

March 22, 2010
7:26 PM

Post #7649168

Oh, don't remind me, Kathy Ann! I used to have a cocker spaniel...loved him to death! He was my best buddy. I think my neighbor poisoned him...found him dead in my garage. The next door neighbor's dog was poisoned and died and the one up next to her also. I think the guy killed all 3 of our dogs.

I went out a short time later and bought a female cocker. She was a terror! Kept her six months and sold her. She ruined my yard...the male dog didn't. Yes, I would get another cocker spaniel that's at least 18 mos. old.

Thanks for all the input!
kathy_ann
Judsonia, AR
(Zone 7b)

March 22, 2010
7:40 PM

Post #7649196

LOL cocker's go through a separation anxiety they seem to get highly attached to their people parents, at least mine did, she use to chew the walls and made big holes in them and chewed the baseboard off the walls while I was at work . Bless her heart, she lived l2 years and we just recently had her put down.

That's sick about your dogs and neighbor's dogs. People are so mean.
gen2026
Camden, AR

April 6, 2010
12:53 PM

Post #7684532

I have just a single strand of electric fence wire around my garden area - and they stayed out of it completely two years ago when I had something in it. Last year, due to all the rain, I didn't have anything but grass and weeds! Now, I am trying to convince myself that I even want to TRY to garden out there again because it is so over run with grass and weeds- just looks like the open field that it was years ago.

Electric fence chargers are not cheap, but they are a lot less expensive than constructing a 10 ft fence. I would recommend putting strips of old sheets or some type of flagging on it periodically to try to keep them from running into it and tearing it down. We never had a problem with that, but when I was growing up we sometimes had deer hit it during the night and tear it down - but that usually only happened once - once they learn it is there they will leave it alone.

Anyone have any good suggestions on HOW to establish a garden out of this old open field ... when our garden was out there 2 yrs ago I felt like I LOST the battle to the weeds and grass... there is just so much there is no way I can keep up. I posted a question asking for suggestions on a way to "establish" a garden and win the battle with the grass but all I got in reply is that I should build all raised beds! I figured the food would cost a fortune by the time I built all the raised beds and I really wouldn't be gaining anything!!

Good luck with your fencing - let us know how it turns out...
Genna
babybluesntn
Hendersonville, TN
(Zone 7b)

April 8, 2010
7:08 AM

Post #7688882

Genna - here is my suggestion on reclaiming your garden. I have a 1 1/4 acre yard w/hardly any good grass--I do not consider Bermuda grass good!! I want to strip the yard and sod it---in sections at a time for obvious reasons. I have 37 flower beds and will be adding more, so not all is going to be grass.

I found a tow behind your mower tiller sold by DR Power equipment. See http://www.drpower.com . You can buy either electric start or manual. I will buy electric start b/c I am too petite to yank a cord and start one manually. The controls are remote to lower and raise both the tongue to attach it and to lower and raise the tiller from 1" - 7.5" depths.

What I'm going to do to my yard and I would suggest you doing to your garden area is this: first spray weed/grass killer over all the area to reclaim. Wait 24 hrs. then do it again. Then take your DR tow behind tiller and begin tilling it up, gradually going deeper each time. In no time you'll have that garden beautiful again and ready to plant. Go on DR's website and look at the videos of areas they have cleared to plant gardens or crops to attract wildlife...ARGH, the dreaded deer! Of course, that is for hunters, not gardeners!

Its the best way to do what you and I want to do, with the least amount of back strain or lifting.
Happy gardening!
Karen
kathy_ann
Judsonia, AR
(Zone 7b)

April 9, 2010
5:43 AM

Post #7691385

We also keep a single strand of Electric fence around our garden, but we do have to keep it baited. because the deer will just not see it and walk right through it.

I tape foil to it at diff sections wtih the two sided tape and drape peanut butter on the inside of the foil, they touch the foil and it shocks their nose and they don't tear up the fence. never have to fix the fence.
gen2026
Camden, AR

April 15, 2010
8:33 AM

Post #7707359

We just tied some pieces of white sheet to ours and never had a problem with them tearing it down, but we did hear them hit it a couple of times. Once they learn it is there I have been told they can smell whether it is on or not. Not sure that is true, but I know we used to have a stud horse that would walk up to the electric fence to sniff it... and IF it happened to be knocked out by lightening he would ALWAYS get out !! He always knew if it was off - even for a SHORT time!

Thanks for the suggestions Karen... I will check out the tiller link.

Genna
gen2026
Camden, AR

April 15, 2010
8:39 AM

Post #7707371

Wow - nice, but out of my price range... wish I had found those before we purchased our walk behind tiller!!

I did notice they have a pull behind sprayer... been looking for one of those and they have all be close to a 1000.00. Anyone happen to know of someone who makes one that is less expensive?? Trying to spray our yard with a 2 gal hand sprayer is a joke!

Genna
babybluesntn
Hendersonville, TN
(Zone 7b)

April 16, 2010
6:13 PM

Post #7711445

DR had their sprayer on wheels (not the kind that's hooked to the back of a mower) for $89 and you don't have to pump it...it pumps itself as you roll it. Gardners Supply also has a similar one for
LizaMouse
Covington, LA
(Zone 8b)

May 2, 2010
8:34 PM

Post #7758780

Hi,

I was lurking.

I don't know what their "limit" is but 5 feet won't even slow down a deer. They go over the stockade fencing next door to me with zero effort. It's about 5 feet. I'm 5'7" and it hits me at chin height. Just before sunset they cut across the big front paddock and clear that fence in a wink. They have a running start jumping out but jumping in, they don't. Amazing to watch them. So graceful and FAST. They look like they're on springs!
missingrosie
Hillsborough, NC

May 2, 2010
9:35 PM

Post #7758902

They are!! It's the anatomy of the hoof. I read about it once and also about how they process the juices from things they chew and send to a gland in I think the throat... checks for toxic substances ...
Smockette
Magnolia, TX
(Zone 8b)

May 2, 2010
9:56 PM

Post #7758928

Is that what happened when they topped 15 plumerias in my yd? Had to be teenagers b/c the adults have sense-enough to know they would have bad stomach cramps! lol
missingrosie
Hillsborough, NC

May 3, 2010
3:46 PM

Post #7761207

they have to chew to form the 'memory'

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