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Talking it over -- 8-12-10

For a little over 10 years now, I have had my vegetable garden at the lake. Even before we moved there permanently, my garden was there and I went back and forth a lot during the summer. During those years, I have had a little problem with bugs, some rabbit invasions and always struggled to keep things watered. However, I never had to deal with deer. That is until this year.

I don't know how or why, but suddenly the deer have found my garden and they seem to find it delectable. I first noticed the signs in late June as my green beans appeared to be nibbled on and there were deer tracks next to the plants. It didn't bother me too much because they only ate a little of the foliage and left the beans.

To deter them I started powdering and spraying the plants. This did help but the deer seemed to know that when we had a middle-of-the-night rain shower, there was a smorgasbord in my garden.

Last week, I went out to mow lawn and as I passed my garden I noticed that the carrot row had gotten shorter. The carrot tops in about half the row were eaten off, and in part of the row the carrots were actually pulled out of the ground. I immediately called out to my husband to look at what the deer had done, encouraging him to spray the carrots and maybe set up his night camera to see what was going on.

I proceeded to mow and a little later returned to the back side of the house and was shocked to see two men in my garden. Upon closer inspection I noticed that it was actually two wood frames with my husbands shirts and hats on them. My garden was now to have two new residents.

I am not sure if it is the scarecrows or my determined efforts to keep things sprayed and powdered but the deer feast is slowing down. However, a few days later my husband announced that the entire three rows of beets in his garden (located several feet from mine) were gone. There is now a camera set up near that garden.

I don't mind feeding the deer but would prefer that they eat what I give them and not take what they want. The only good thing I can see out of this entire situation is that perhaps this year, during deer season, I can just sit in my porch, look out over the garden and nab a tasty treat of my own.