Monday, June 29, 2009

nibbling, munching and audible gasps

One evening last week I took a walk out to the garden to visit the tiny veggies and to assess the workload for the following morning.

I took note that there would still be lettuce for picking and even snapped off a few remaining pea pods before I noticed the beans.

At which point I let out an audible gasp.
Nearly the entire center of four rows devoid of leaves - munched to the stalks, tiny beanlettes left exposed! Barely a plant was left un-nibbled.

Heartsick, I then discovered the evidence:
Deer. In the garden. Feasting away.
Needless to say, a better fence is in order; however that is not immediately possible. The current method of deer defense involves the application of a wretched-smelling (though all-natural) repellent solution around the perimeters.
When one grows vegetable plants, she can expect to defend the crop from all manner of detrimental insects and weeds, slowly, day-by-day, a bit of work here, a bit there. It is quite another thing to wake one morning and find the entire garden bare - a very real possibility with deer, rabbits, or even raccoons sniffing about.
I am fortunate to have lost so little, though it still makes me sigh to see those bare stalks. My home would not be the same without my animal neighbors, but with a little luck and some perseverance, perhaps I can turn their attention from my own garden back to the wild.

In the meantime, I'll take in the survivors and savor my harvest just that much more.


Yeon said...
This comment has been removed by the author.
Yeon said...

It is sad to look at those nibbled veggies.

My mentor gardens in the middle of mountain in Pennsylvania. Last year when I visited her, I saw that she had a fence going really, really high to stop deers coming into the garden. Hope the repellents stop deers till you build the strongest fence ever.

Through My Kitchen Window said...

Wow. That sounds tough. I was going to suggest growing some garlic or basil inbetween the veggies but somehow I don't think deer "bugs" will be terribly deterred. Hope you recover without any further damamge.

Chelsea said...

Ladies - those deer are so frustrating! So far the 'liquid fence' has been doing the trick, but I have grand visions of an 8 foot tall fence lined with anise hyssop, hot peppers, garlic - whatever deters them. (and something tough at the bottom to keep the bunnies out, too...)

Anonymous said...

Hey Chelsea! Was reading your blog for some yummy recipes and read this post. You may have overcome the problem already and this may seem kind of gross, but my neighbor gets empty coffee cans and fills them with hair twice a season from teh barber. he says the deer and rabbits haven't touched his veggies since...and we have TONS of deer and rabbits over in these parts, but not too many raccoons...

Chelsea said...

Hi Char!

Thanks for the tip - the problem has definitely not been solved... Just temporarily eased. I wonder what it is about the hair? Scent? Texture?