shrubs eaten by deer???

jessicaheadyApril 12, 2008

my father has about 10 shrubs by the house and this winter the deer have gone after them like mad..... he is wondering if they will grow back at all. the deer have taken all the foliage off of them leaving just the branches, i believe they are a juniper variety, he has different size, ranging from 2 feet to about 5 feet tall and a foot or more wide.

should we just wait it out to see if they re grow, or should he pull them all up?

thanks

jessica

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bogturtle(SE NJ 7a)

A constant problem here. They will re-grow, but a deer can remove a years growth in a few minutes. and the mutilated plant will take years to become symmetrical again. Re-planting the same plants will only invite them back.
I have had good success with diligence in use of the expensive and obnoxious liquid fence spray, but, if you visited here you might be put off by the green wire cages that surround many of my lower or younger shrubs. Starved deer will eat anything, including plants poisonous to them.

    Bookmark   April 13, 2008 at 8:24AM
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jessicaheady

well this is the first year that he didn't cover all of them with burlap.... i guess he will cover them this coming winter :)

    Bookmark   April 13, 2008 at 9:13AM
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laceyvail(6A, WV)

I suspect your Dad has yews--a deer favorite, though very poisonous to cattle. He can cover them with black deer netting that is nearly invisible. Deer won't eat junipers unless they're starving.

    Bookmark   April 14, 2008 at 6:30AM
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jessicaheady

would they come right up to the house though? these shrubs are right next to the house by the windows, and we have 3 dogs... very bold deer :) do they like yews that much?

    Bookmark   April 14, 2008 at 7:37AM
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Dibbit(z7b SC)

Yes, to all the above. Especially if the dogs are in the house at night - deer soon learn. A neighbor here had 4 Jack Russells and a hound mix a few years ago (now has 3 JRs) - heard continued barking one day so looked out the window - there was a deer grazing on the lawn, with 4 bouncing JRs and the hound, all going crazy. He would look at them, and then go back to eating, so he was either VERY hungry, or not really scared - or both.

    Bookmark   April 14, 2008 at 9:49AM
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jayco(5b NY)

Yes, they sure do come right up to the house around my neck of the woods!

I just wanted to add that if you use the black plastic netting, you have to do more than just wrap the shrub, since the deer will definitely eat through the netting and even push it back some. So the thing to do is to make a sort of cage around them with stakes and netting, if possible.

    Bookmark   April 14, 2008 at 10:55AM
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