What can I say? It's winter here and I miss all green growing things but especially my garden. I've been putting off the urge to plan next years until January. It was my first garden and I'm eager to move things around and plan things out differently now that I've done it once.
I left the gates open to the garden in case I wanted to get in there this winter. I knew that once snow started falling the gates wouldn't budge. I was out there yesterday and saw that there are MANY deer wandering around, digging down to eat old stuff and picking through the compost pile (basically a pile of inedible bits I tossed in a heap, it's not 'hot'). I don't mind this at all except now I'm wondering if I'm TEACHING them to come to my garden to eat? I have a 6 foot tall fence which worked this past summer. I know you really need 8 to be "safe" but I wasn't willing to go that huge. I had a really successful garden last year and I'm kicking myself over the idea that they may have discovered what's going on here and will keep coming back for more next summer.
They've also eaten the lower portion of our cedar tree. :/
Will accept any advice on deer habits or any commiseration on missing our gardens.
I was holding out until January to really plan out the garden. I ordered my seeds this morning.
I wouldn't worry about letting the deer into the garden now. I pull down my fence every year and let the animals at the garden remains. Then in the spring I'll put the fence back up when it's time to get gardening. My fence is only 4' and I don't have any problems with deer going in the fence. They will stand outside and munch on anything close to the fence so I just have to be careful and plant a few feet inside the fence.
We also have huge problems with deer destroying out trees. We've planted about 20 or 30 small trees. They've killed 90% of our trees under 5' tall and damaged most of the trees over about 10' tall. We have since learned to protect our trees. We put black corrugated plastic pipe around the trunks of all our trees in the winter. It's ugly, but they're still alive.
Get the deer proofing book from the library. I have fenced my yard in but I get rabbits and squirrels who dig and chew up everything. You can place food and grow things in corners of your yard to keep the pest animals away from your gardens.
The animals are pretty, but I do what I have to in order to keep my yard wildlife free.I hate seeing my plants eaten,and the parasites they drop in the yard are annoying(ticks,fleas,lice,worms)