So I thought I had her licked, and then I forgot. I completely FORGOT the first rule of varmint repelling. NEVER assume that the one method you’ve been using will continue to work. As much as they found that measure compelling at first, one day, one of those critters figures your crap out. And then know what happens? Well, I’ll tell you. As soon as that rogue deer figures out that the Ivory soap hanging all around the garden just smells bad, but won’t actually hurt them, you will come out to find that EVERY SINGLE ONE of the green tomatoes you’ve been eyeing with glee will be gone. And it won’t just be the tomatoes, it will be the branch the tomato was on.
And while she’s in there she’ll knock off a few branches of happily producing pepper plants. THEN she’ll eat some more of the strawberry plants that stopped producing a while ago, walk all through the bit you’ve been preparing for planting, rough up the cucumber plants, and step on the potatoes on her way out the other side. Bulls in china shops got nothing on the deer.
So, I went commercial. I got some critter repellent to scatter that smells weird. I sprinkled it heavily around the periphery of the garden. The soap is still out there, just in case that continues to be convincing to any of these giant pests. Tomorrow I intend to apply the age old, totally free, and at least effective for rabbits remedy. Bigg Sis and I don’t share this information with just anybody… but seems to me that the good of the garden is a worthy cause, so I’ll tell you what I’m gonna do. I’m gonna pee in a jar.
Yep, that’s what I said. I’m gonna pee in a jar and then pour it around the periphery of the garden. Yep, pee. And no, I’m not going to pour it on the garden itself or the veggies, so you don’t have to be icked out. I am going to find out if the trick that has ALWAYS worked for rabbits will do anything about these daggone deer. If my own supply proves inadequate, I guess I’ll have to buy some of the stuff with the gosh awful coyote pee everybody uses to protect their flowers around here… enjoying the garden, except for that heinous smell. I’m trying not to be discouraged. I really am, but it’s hard.
A Maryland garden is empty without tomatoes and I’m on year 4 of looking like I might not get any for one reason or another. I talk it over with people who know what they’re doing, my garden guru at the garden center, I read, and my plants do great. And then SOMETHING goes wrong. A few years ago the squirrels stole just about everything. The last two years stinkbugs did the plants in. This year things were looking pretty good, and then she came. And I’ve had to share (and by share I mean I get nothing). When I share from my garden, I like it to be because of my bounty, not because my repellent measures have become obsolete.
I will remember the first rule of critter control. I will stop assuming anything is working and just introduce new stinks every two weeks and see how that goes. As for my long term plans, I think we’d darn well better have a dog by next sumer or I’m buying all my tomatoes at the farmers’ market. Soap, egg solids, pee… whatever, none of it works like a dog who really likes to chase deer. Miss you little buddy.