We may love to watch beautiful deer and rabbits in the wild, but they’re not always so pretty when seen destroying the flowers and vegetables in our backyard. Are rabbits and deer constantly nibbling away at your garden? What can you do to keep these creatures away?
One way to ward off rabbits and deer is to plant foliage that actually repels these animals. You may try planting some aromatic perennials that rabbits and deer don’t favor. Here are few: Echinacea, chives, lavender, garlic, yarrow, peony, catnip plants, and columbine or honeysuckle. Although humans may like the smell of many of these perennials, wildlife like deer and rabbits can actually be repelled by the powerful scent of these plants. You can plant these perennials around the border of your garden or property to help repel these animals.
Along with plants that have repelling smells to certain wildlife, many fragrant soaps can act as repellents. You can hang these bars of deodorant soap, preferably wet, on trees or plants around your landscape to repel pests.
Some gardeners also make natural deer and rabbit repellents combining ingredients like red pepper, hot sauce, garlic powder, eggs, etc. and making them into a mix that these animals do not like and applying it to various plants in the garden.
Along with deer and rabbit repellent plants, many gardeners also use deer or rabbit-resistant plants. These are trees, shrubs, and plants that animals do not like to eat so they don’t bother with your garden in the first place. Deer-resistant plants, trees, and shrubs include juniper, birch, blue spruce, boxwoods, iris, daffodil, lilac, barberry, and holly. Plants that are rabbit-resistant are a little harder to tell but some include birch, hydrangea, elderberry, lilac, daffodils, sedum, and yucca. Planting shrubs that have thorns, fuzzy leaves, or thistles is also a good deterrent.
A good fence around your garden is one of the most effective ways of keeping these animals out. To keep rabbits out, you’ll need to have a fine mesh fencing around the lower 2 feet. Fences will need to be around 8 feet high to keep out whitetail deer, or they can be slightly lower (around 6 feet) but be slanted. Solid wooden fences will of course be the best deterrent for deer so that they can’t spot what’s on the other side.
Your much-loved dog or cat may also be one of the best deterrents for deer and rabbits. Other tactics include scaring the animals away with scarecrows, radios, loud wind chimes, and motion-sensitive floodlights.
Visit with the Tulsa landscape design specialists at Oklahoma Landscape for more tips on how to protect your garden from deer, rabbits, and insects.