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How to Protect Trees from Deer

Living in Ohio is so beautiful. We have a lovely changing of the seasons, good-looking trees and other greenery, and animals native to this area that are both gentle and serene. Who among us doesn’t love to watch a deer grazing in an open field? It’s so beautiful to see nature up close, in your own backyard. Of course, it’s not all good news when it comes to deer wandering across your property. As pretty as they are, they can actually cause a lot of damage. Those deer aren’t in your yard to say hello; they want to eat your plants!

Hungry deer chew on leaves, pine needles, buds, or bark. They don’t just eat your landscape, though. Territorial bucks can also kill trees by scraping them with their antlers. Young and recently planted landscapes are the most susceptible to being damaged or killed. Take steps now to protect your trees from deer.

Tip #1 Use a physical barrier. By far, the best way to keep deer from eating your plants is to stop the animals from getting to them in the first place. You have a few options, depending on the size of your property and your aesthetic preferences. A fence is probably the easiest. As long as it’s at least eight feet tall, deer won’t be able to get in. You can also install nylon netting over low-lying shrubs, wrap shrubs in burlap, surround plants with wire metal cages, and wrap trunks with tree wrap. These will allow deer to come into your yard, but not actually damage the plant life. If you choose to wrap your trees, be sure to replace the wrap every few months to prevent it from deteriortating and becoming easy for the deer to get past.

Tip #2 Be choosy about your plantlife. Remove plants from your landscape that deer are known to love, such as cedar, yew, rhododendron, maples, and roses. In their place, put in plants that deer are known to dislike. This includes fern-like foliage, fuzzy leaves, spines, or anything with strong odors. 

Tip #3 Spray deer repellent. Spray vulnerable trees and shrubs with smelly, bitter-tasting deer repellent. This spray is designed specifically to taste bad to the deer, but not harm the plant life itself.

Tip #4 Remove any tasty treats. Deer don’t just eat leaves. Take a loop around your outdoor area to see if there’s any other snacks potentially tempting them to come into your backyard. This includes bird feeders and pet food dishes. Remove these food sources from your yard.

Deer are infamous for damaging trees and shrubs. Use these tips to protect your backyard. If they’ve already done damage, reach out to Land Pro Landscaping and we can come to your property and help. This may mean trimming your trees back a bit or planting new trees to replace what has been damaged too badly. 

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