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Deerproofing Your Yard & Garden

From nibbling on fruit bushes to destroying flower beds, unwanted deer pose a frustrating and challenging obstacle to even the most patient gardeners. Rhonda Massingham Hart provides insights into deer behavior and offers a variety of proven techniques to keep your deer problem under control. Learn how to choose the best fence types, landscape with plants deer detest, make effective homemade repellents, and much more. You’ll have all the information you need to maintain a pristine, deer-free landscape. 

Paperback: 208 pages

Publisher: Storey Publishing, LLC; 2nd edition (April 15, 2005)

Language: English

ISBN-10: 1580175856

ISBN-13: 978-1580175852

Product Dimensions: 6 x 0.6 x 9 inches

Shipping Weight: 11.2 ounces (View shipping rates and policies)

Average Customer Review: 4.4 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (39 customer reviews)

Best Sellers Rank: #525,025 in Books (See Top 100 in Books) #15 in Books > Engineering & Transportation > Engineering > Civil & Environmental > Environmental > Insecticides & Pesticides #307 in Books > Crafts, Hobbies & Home > Gardening & Landscape Design > Outdoor & Recreational Areas #438 in Books > Education & Teaching > Higher & Continuing Education > Test Preparation > Advanced Placement

Being new property & house owners in a suburban area adjacent to a deer wintering yard, this book provided us excellent advice on coping with our local deer population. We are planning a garden from scratch, and the information is very practical. It should help any gardener with deer in their area reduce their cost of resultant damage. The book deals with deer behavioural characteristics, and the likelihood of deer frequenting the property, as well as how to plan a deerproof garden. From plants that are detested by deer, to plants that will guarantee deer company: annual, perennial, shrub & tree choices are listed, including hardiness zone information. A range of strategies for keeping deer out of the garden is also included. The strategies go from fences to foul smelling substances to noise makers, and advice is given on the likelihood of success for each. An excellent tailorable reference book.

This book is concise, well-structured and highly informative. It begins with an analysis of how deer think (if you can call it that!), and how they use their senses. The author then uses these insights to derive numerous strategies for avoiding attracting deer and deterring them if they do find your garden. These vary from what I would call defensive (avoid planting things that deer like to eat, using the exhaustive list provided as a guide - there are even some roses that deer apparently dislike!) to highly combative (electric fences, self-activated noises or sprinklers). She also offers numerous ideas for upsetting deers' reliance on their sense of smell, including stringing up highly scented soap bars, and spraying plants with homemade pepper spray or stinky egg mix! There is an edgy humor to the book that makes for a fun read. A very intelligent approach to a very exasperating problem. Buy it.

This book has become the bible of deer resistant gardening for good reason. I have yet to find a more thorough text regarding deer behavior, deer deterrents and, deer resistant fences. If you have a deer problem you should defiantly read this book.The one chapter that could be improved is the one entitled "Deer-o-Scaping", which discusses landscaping with deer resistant plants. The list of deer resistant plants provided in this chapter is divided into plant categories (i.e., annuals, perennials, etc...) and delineates the zones where each plant grows, as well as the plant's soil and light requirements. While this is certainly more information than I have seen provided in most deer resistant plant lists, it nevertheless assumes the reader knows what the plant looks like and is familiar with its' habit. The novice gardener will need to reference other publications to learn more about the plants in this list before he/she can plan an attractive deer resistant garden. The experienced gardener will undoubtedly wish the deer resistance of more unusual and exotic plants were discussed.

This book should really be called 101 ideas for hopefully keeping deer at bay. As any one who has dealt with deer in the garden knows, it is not one thing you do, but a combination of techniques that insures a minimal amount of damage to the garden. And, this book is chock full of suggestions about creating your perfect landscape and keeping your deer sweet sanity at the same time. Rhonda Massingham Hart compels us to understand the deer and its life by going into details of their traits and habits. She lists deer resistant plants and includes some roses which seem to be less appetizing than others. Not surprising her list comprises many herbs, such as Rosemary, Oregano and Thyme. She organizes her selections into several garden plans based on what kind of setting you may have. There is a comprehensive review of fencing methods and repellants that are currently on the market. And, while we do not condone the use of electrical dog collars or thiram fungicide sprayed on your plants, this is a most thorough discussion that should be read by all who have suffered deer damage to their gardens.

This is simply an excellent book that tackles a critical wildlife management issue intelligently and without politics and rhetoric. The scope of the book and the author's skill as both a gardener and a keen observer of deer antics is impressive. As a master gardener and garden designer, I use this book in almost all my consultations because the problem is so prevalent, and because Ms. Hart provides some really smart answers to customer's questions. Though I agree with the reviewer who thought the book lacked information on more exotic or esoteric species of plants, the list of deer resistant species is quite extensive in light of the other information provided. There will probably never be an exhaustive list of deer proof plants because of harsh winters and continual clearing of natural habitats to make way for housing and commercial expansion.Ms. Harts' suggested strategy of using deer repulsive plants around more deer desirable plantings is smart. I was able to grow my beloved tulips surrounded by alliums, whose foliage emerges as the tulips start to bud. Kudos to Ms. Hart.

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