It’s spring, and the hosta have come up all over the garden. This is good news, not only because it means the weather is warmer and the garden is prettier, but also and more to the point: The deer did not manage to kill off all my hosta when they clipped them down to bare stalks last fall.
Even the expensive designer blue, cream, gold, dark green, and chartreuse hostas in mix-and-match stripes and leaf-margins are back. Given the amount of shade here, the leaf-patterns of these hostas are an important part of the garden: The shy and retiring Allan P. McConnell, Aristocrat, flamboyant little Feather Boa, Grand Tiara, Great Expectations, June, Touch of Class, and the hard-to-find Venus, with unprepossessing green leaves and marvelously large and fragrant flowers in August. There are also lovely swathes of narrow-leafed and wide-leafed green hostas and twisty green-and-white-leafed hostas that are legacy plants from the previous owner and that we have propagated across the garden over the years.
So now, my job, as I see it, is to make sure that the deer don’t get these hosta again.
Last weekend we went to Lowe’s, and I bought two different types of deer repellents. I installed the one and sprayed on the other. Yesterday, I did some research on the Internet to see what else I might do. I found that there are many products on the market, including those that smell bad to deer, those that taste bad to deer (don’t use these on your vegetable gardens, though), and both. My favorite of these is a substance called “Milorganite”, which is made from Milwaukee sewage. Really! And–it’s organic!
There are also many recipes for deer repellent that can be made right at home from readily available (or, well, obtainable) ingredients. These range from eggs to liquid detergent to hot peppers to garlic to hair clippings to urine (don’t ask).
But of all the recipes posted by helpful people on various Web sites, my absolute favorite is from Hanxter at www.deer-departed.com. Please click through and read it! Even if you don’t have a deer problem! This may not be the most effective solution to the deer problem, but hey — turnabout is fair play.
I wonder if they have a hunting season in Newton.