Oh, Deer!

Almost every summer evening these past couple years, sometimes every other sumer evening, depending on when it rains, I've taken a two-minute stroll around our house outside to spray Deer Stopper near all my hostas and impatiens.  It works.

Well, it doesn't stop the deer from coming into our yard, as you can see from these pictures, but it does stop the deer from eating their salad in our yard.

I took this first set of picdtures through windows from inside our four season “porch” in July 2015.

Allan and I share our property border with Carver Park, and it sort of reminds me of the Rio Grande River between Mexico and Texas -- and so I've come to call the four legged, white-tailed, grazing, prancing beauties, "illegal aliens." 

They come without invitation and without papers, and they take without asking. 

Over these past four and a half decades, they've chewed hundreds of my hostas and New Guinea Impatiens, and irretrievably hurt most of our Colorado Blue Spruce trees -- all this, despite the 3,000 acres of delicious Carver Park at their disposal next to us -- literally in our backyard.

Oh, Deer, Deer!

I took this second set of pictures through the big north window in our living room in November 2015.

On October 3rd this fall, I stopped spraying Deer Stopper.  On the morning of October 4th, nearly all of my 30 large pots of New Guineas were nibbled and munched as were a bunch of my hostas. 

I didn't like to see it, but at least my plants had survived and thrived throughout the spring and summer. 

When it's time for fall cleanup, I don't so much mind that the deer steal a special salad from our yard.

It wasn't until Monday, November 9th, that I saw a deer again in our yard, up close and personal, after the mama doe and her fawn had visited.  Normally they come as a herd and mingle in the shadows. 

This one didn't run even when I knocked on the windows or made noise out the front door.  I had to open the patio door and let him see me on the deck.

On the weekend of November 14th, I heard some gun shots in the Park and I knew exactly what was going on.   A shotgun hunt was held in Carver Park Reserve that weekend. 

Three Rivers Park District works to keep white-tailed deer herds in balance with the available habitat.  Aerial deer surveys are conducted in January or February each year.  People interested in the hunt apply through the Minnesota Department of Natural Resources.

I've heard of another good remedy for keeping the deer from eating things in our yard, but I haven't used it yet.  Maybe next spring I'll try it.  You take a bar or two of Irish Spring soap, cut it all up into shavings, and spread it around your plants.  I guess rabbits don't like the strong smell of Irish Spring either.

Considering this Christmas season of Favorite Things and the Do-Re-Mi song, do you know that Santa's reindeer were all females? 

It turns out that reindeer grow antlers regardless of gender, but males typically shed their funny protrusions before Christmas.

~Editor Sue