Three Things to Consider Before Buying Deer Repellent

Keep deer away from your flowers, vegetables, and shrubs.

Cute deer eating in the woods
Deer repellents protect your plants and are harmless to animals.Unsplash/Vladimir Kudinov

No plant is deer-proof, so if you don’t want to buy a fence, you can treat your garden and plants with a deer repellent. There are three kinds of repellents, and each works differently. Ground-based repellents make the area smell bad to deer are a good choice for treating large plots. Many of these will also break down into nutrients that benefit plants. Spray repellents make vegetation smell bad to deer. They will emit a disagreeable odor to humans for a short time but will keep deer away for weeks. There are also all-natural sprays that make vegetation taste bad to deer that don’t have unpleasant odors or make plants unsafe for human consumption. Here’s how to know which one is right for you and your garden or landscaping.

Enviro Pro 1025 Deer Scram Repellent Granular White Pail, 25 Pounds
This ground-based product keeps animals away from large areas.Enviro Pro

If you have a large area you want to keep deer away from, rather than away from specific plants, a ground-based repellent may be a good choice. These chemicals are usually granular, organic repellents you sprinkle throughout a planted area. The repellents emit an odor that deer don’t like, keeping them away from the area. It lasts for about a month before needing a reapplication, and the old material eventually breaks down into nutrients that are beneficial to plants.

Liquid Fence Deer & Rabbit Repellent Concentrate, 40-Ounce
This spray is rain resistant.Liquid Fence

If your plants are scattered over your property, or if you have tall plants, a liquid spray repellent coats a bad smell that repels deer over vegetation. These sprays contain compounds designed to repel deer from a plant before they taste it, and while they can smell bad to humans when first applied, the odor dissipates quickly. You won’t smell it after a while, but deer will smell it for weeks after treatment. You may need to reapply the repellent after a few weeks or after a heavy rain, and they’re best used on vegetation you’re not planning to eat yourself.

Deer Out 32oz Concentrate Deer Repellent
This liquid treatment doesn’t smell bad to people.Deer Out

The advantage of repellents with no harmful chemicals or poisons is they make vegetation taste bad to deer without smelling bad to humans. This makes them a better choice for plants close to your house. Deer may take a bite of sprayed vegetation, but won’t eat any more of it, and you can safely apply it to plants, vegetables, and fruit you plan to eat.

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