Oh, Deer. Need ideas for my front yard.

storiespjsJune 15, 2012

I have lost all hope of having flowers. Deer have eaten everything.I have tried everything, so now I am giving up and going green.

This is a 20 wide by 10 deep area.

It used to have beautiful daylilies and sage mixed with annuals.

Now it has one crazy butterfly bush and the remains of some annuals.

I'm pulling everything out.

I have no idea what to put back in, but it will have to be deer-resistant.

There used to be small evergreens and ivy in this area.

I have tons of periwinkle and other groundcover I can use.

I am looking for some form and structure. I am truly clueless.

Any ideas will be much appreciated.

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designoline6(Z6)

You could inrerplant some thorn and plants in plant's struction.avoid mess,need to take time to design.

    Bookmark   June 15, 2012 at 7:18PM
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deviant-deziner(Oh zone)

Suggest that you check out your local horticultural associations ( colleges, nurseries, clubs ) for a deer tolerant list specific to your area and zone.

It will be a challenge for anyone on this garden design forum to provide you with any suggestions without knowing your hardiness zone and sun/ shade patterns, soil conditions.....

ps - that's an attractive color on your house.

    Bookmark   June 15, 2012 at 8:01PM
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rosiew(8 GA)

Have you tried any of the deer deterents? The "Scarecrow" has gotten great reviews, and I personally have seen a great garden on Deer Crossing Lane here that is the only uneaten one on the cul de sac. Ha - you'd think the neighbors would learn from this guy.

Also, I had great success with Milorganite, reapplying when I saw any signs of grazing. Hate for you to give up on the cheerful look of that bed.

HTH, Rosie, Sugar Hill, GA

    Bookmark   June 15, 2012 at 8:29PM
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storiespjs

Sorry, I wasn't thinking clearly. I live in Orange County, NY. Thank you for your interest. I have tried ever single deer repellent, including male urine. I have also planted so many "deer resistant" plants. These deer mock me. This year they even ate my Bee Balm. It's unheard of.

    Bookmark   June 15, 2012 at 9:32PM
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storiespjs

Sorry, I wasn't thinking clearly. I live in Orange County, NY. Thank you for your interest. I have tried ever single deer repellent, including male urine. I have also planted so many "deer resistant" plants. These deer mock me. This year they even ate my Bee Balm. It's unheard of.

    Bookmark   June 16, 2012 at 9:10AM
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karinl(BC Z8)

Is it an option to fence your property, or part of it? On local islands where deer are endemic, a fence is simply the rule around any area where gardening is being done.

Karin L

    Bookmark   June 16, 2012 at 12:53PM
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denninmi(8a)

Disgusting, isn't it, to put so much money, time, and effort into your yard, only to have it destroyed by deer, woodchucks, rabbits, squirrels, etc.

    Bookmark   June 16, 2012 at 1:30PM
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duluthinbloomz4

I've thrown much good money after bad in the epic man vs deer battle. Now I'm at the point of having only what I can reasonably protect or "new favorites". Frou frou plant buying days are over. Creatures seem to leave my annuals alone.

What I've learned - deer will starve to death before eating Nepetas, peonies, Oriental poppies, Ostrich Ferns, Siberian Iris, Veronicas such as "Crater Lake Blue, and the Salvias - "Purple Rain", "May Night" are good ones. Astilbe's are rarely browsed. They also steer clear of my "Pink Beauty" potentilla and any spruce with short, spikey needles... they won't even nibble the new growth on my Bird's Nest spruce.

I'm liking my gardens with this new approach much more than I thought I would. I get a lot of wild Saponaria Officinalis in undisturbed areas which satisfies my desire for phlox. Aquilegia Canadensis, Johnny Jump-Ups, and forget-me-nots galore. And a tiny patch of mat forming red Dianthus Deltoides over the years has given me enough ground cover to spread everywhere and anywhere.

    Bookmark   June 16, 2012 at 2:20PM
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marcinde(7)

Deer-safe lists are useless. According to the local lists, rhododendrons and aucuba are safe. Nope. Apparently aucuba is for deer what tuna is for my cats. Your best bet is to chat up your local extension agent. Their job description includes being knowledgeable and awesome,so s/he will have locally relevant info on what survives.

    Bookmark   June 16, 2012 at 9:04PM
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storiespjs

Thank you, everyone. Today I went fence shopping, at least for my back yard...The front...ah, well...I will take the suggestions and try a little of each. I appreciate all the input.

    Bookmark   June 16, 2012 at 9:22PM
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oceandweller(8B)

I see you seem to have the edges of it cut off somewhat. Normally I don't recommend bamboo but sometimes they can be handy for cutting off the area. The more you restrict it to the deer the better off you'll be. I also agree on the thorny idea, but deer are pretty darn hardy.

Sense you like flowers, what about allium "flowering onion"? Personally I think Barberry are pretty good with deer here.

we also use cayenne pepper somewhat effectively.

    Bookmark   June 18, 2012 at 7:47PM
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oceandweller(8B)

Also they make those automated sprinklers that shoot a jet of water at anything they sense, pretty darn cool. Deer are pretty skiddish so that might work. Just some ideas.

    Bookmark   June 18, 2012 at 7:49PM
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GardenShananigans

Seems like the *best way would be to go green like you are planning. Deer are creatures of habit so maybe once they realize they cannot eat anything in your yard they will adjust their routine. Over time you may be able to re-plant flowers. Alternately, you could use the Scarecrow -- they work great as long as you keep fresh batteries in them.

    Bookmark   June 18, 2012 at 9:41PM
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phlowerpower(5)

Deer are also eating my monarda this year. I know deer eat different plants in different regions, but I can list what has worked well for me here.

What they have not eaten or browsed only lightly: bachelor's buttons, nigella, larkspur, campanula, cosmos, zinnia, marigolds, petunia, cleome, sweet william, campanula, foxglvoe, monkshood, butterfly weed, verbena bonariensis, agastache, yarrow, peonies, siberian iris, bearded iris, clematis, sweet peas (tehy did eat my edible pea plants though), salvia, veronica, rudbeckia, hardy geraniums, echinacea, liatris, astilbe, coralbells, foam flower, pachysandra, vinca (annual and vine), joe pye weed, obedience plant, brunnera, ajuga, sweet woodruff, ligularia, japanese painted fern, christmas fern, ostrich fern, helleborus, trilliums (nibbled), virginia bluebells, thalictrium, anemonella, canadian ginger, aruncus, spireas, wigeleas, boxwood, fothergillia, lilac, caryopteris, butterfly bush, some hydrangeas and some viburnums. Daffodils, alliums and gladiolias and dutch iris were not touched. Lilies seem to be a favorite though.

    Bookmark   June 23, 2012 at 10:22PM
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