Our visitor shows her face

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This week my son and I completed putting up a fence around our new vegetable garden. This was in response to some critter or other chewing off the leaves on several tomato plants. The morning after I posted the previous blog entry, the tomatoes were fine, but something had started chewing on the sunflowers.

garden fence

By this point I no longer suspected a rabbit or a groundhog. As we returned home the evening after we partially installed then fence, around 9 pm, a deer walked across the yard, sniffed the fence, and then started munching on some nearby plants. We watched her for about ten minutes, and when I got out of the car to shoo her away, she ran back into the woods, chased by a very large fox. (That’s another reason why I’m not suspecting rabbits so much anymore.)

The next morning, she returned, a bit further back in the yard. This is by no means the first time we have had deer in the back yard; I’ve seen groups as large as eight running around the lawn near the woods. However, since we had not seen them much recently, we assumed they had moved moved on.

garden fence

This doe was not at all shy. I walked closer and closer to her as I was taking photos and she didn’t seem to care much. In fact, after this next shot, she looked me right in the face and started walking toward me. I decided it was time to go indoors.

garden fence

I’m hoping the fence holds, though I may need to resort to some other measures when the vegetables get taller. I’ll tackle that next month when and if it becomes an issue. I know some people have put a single line of what is essentially an electric fence around the top of an existing fence. I really don’t plan to do that, though motion-activated lasers keep coming to mind as a solution.


  1. Shy, they are not. They get too used to people, living close to us, as they do, in the lightly wooded areas. I have a… family? herd? exaltation?… of them who like to lie on my front lawn, four or five or six of them some evenings, and watch as I drive up my driveway.

    I half expect them to wave hello.

  2. they do make a motion sensitive sprinkler, might work on your bambi. We have packs of deer roaming our yard in Austin as well, currently that includes two brand new fawns (oh great, two more mouths to feed).

  3. If you don’t mind her nibbling the ornamentals and only want to keep her away from the salad bar there’s a really simple solution that you’re going to laugh at, but I know a number of folks that are using it to success. Plain old bar soap.

    Grab a multipack at the wharehouse club store, drill a hole through the middle of the bar and zip tie it to the top of the fence posts. Depending on how you attach them you might not even need to drill the hole in the middle, but if you don’t, leave the zip tie un-cut, so you can tighten as the rain dissolves the bar.

    Placed at about 5-8 foot intervals around the fence should keep her from getting to the produce. So far around here, good old Ivory has been the preference due to it’s lack of perfumey smell, relatively cheap cost, and effectiveness.

  4. Ronnie DiNucci

    And you still have all those hostas with deer in the neighborhood…wow, they don’t last at my house at all.

  5. Bob,

    You can buy a product called liquid fence. It is made of rotten eggs and garlic. It keeps deer and rabbits away and works well. I have a heard of deer on my land as well as 50+ rabbits. It cost about $11.

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