Sunday, January 4, 2009

Hungry Deer

With all the snow on the ground, we can see what plants the deer have been visiting. I already knew that they liked an unidentified shrub in front of the house, a yew in back, and that they had sampled my saffron crocuses (which had never bloomed anyway, so no loss there.) But there were some other surprises, too.

The evergreen azalea was thoroughly nibbled on the sheltered side. Last year the deer didn’t touch it.

The deciduous azalea had been so thoroughly eaten last year that I was surprised when it recovered over the summer. So I’m not surprised that it was munched again. What surprises me is that the deer didn’t wait for it to put out leaves in the Spring.

This was the real surprise. The deer ate my holly bushes! Spines and all! I thought that evergreen holly was deer-proof. After all, holly is one of the few plants at my parents’ house that don’t get eaten by deer. Are we having a tough winter for deer here in New England?

I suppose if the deer are overpopulated this winter, it will be a good year for the coyotes.

It looks as if the deer also rang our doorbell while we were away.


marna said...

There is a gardener in Walpole who is having a very tough time with deer, She tried several different supposed deer resistant/repellent plants this year. They drove in their driveway to find 5 deer just munching all around recently!!

When it is a bad winter they eat the ivy growing up the trees out back - No sign of - oh, oh, wait a minute I just looked more closely out the window. There are tracks in the snow around the trees. I can't tell how much has been eaten as there is lots of ivy still on the trees. I will have to monitor it more closely. And I will have to take a walk around to see it anything else is being feasted on. Thanks for the heads up!!!

dkgarber said...

I am late on this one, but I am surprised the deer cleaned me out, considering what a feast they've had at your house!!

This winter was very very tough indeed.

Anna said...

We live out in the middle of nowhere, and the deer eat us alive. I got my husband to make me a homemade deer deterrent after every single veggie I owned got chomped on last year (and we tried all of the usual solutions to no avail.) I'm not sure how suburban you are --- probably wouldn't work in suburbia --- but if you're desperate and not too close to your neighbors, you might give it a shot. We scrounged around and made ours for pennies and it's 100% effective!