Sunday, June 5, 2011

Fending off the Critters

This year you vowed your garden would be the envy of all your neighbors.  So you've tilled, composted, tilled, mulched, tilled, planted, weeded and finally the seeds have sprouted.  Ah, to see the fruits of your labor!  Well, you won't if the darn rabbits and deer see those fruits first!

Newly sprouted vegetables are the most delectable niblets for the wildlife living just past the edge of your lawn.  They know where to look.  They know when to nibble.  They know to be gone by morning.  So here's a few household suggestions to keep them at bay.

Take all those little hotel soaps that you've collected and hang them around your garden.  Sprinkle the hair you've just trimmed off Junior's mullet.  Spray your old perfumes and colognes along the garden edges.  Hang tin pie plates on posts to rattle in the wind.  All of these will dissuade deer from stepping foot near your sprouts. 

If you'd like to get creative in the kitchen, mix four eggs, two ounces of red pepper sauce, and two ounces of minced garlic in one quart of water.  Stir well and let sit for one hour.  Strain off the liquid and spray on plants.  This concoction works well, but needs to be re-applied after a rain.

If you're more concerned about bugs then critters, try sinking a small container into the ground near your plants.  Fill the bottom inch with beer.  Slugs and bugs will climb into the beer trap and not be able to climb back out again.  Seems there's an analogy I could make here, but I'll press on.

Finally, we couldn't talk about home remedies without talking about vinegar!  Vinegar is very acetic and can be used as an herbicide.  Use it full strength but be sure to spray only the weeds.  Plants will turn brown and die within two days. 

So go out there and defend what's your's!  Your root cellar is depending on you!


  1. Awesome tips!I can go get some hair from our local barber if needed. I see rabbits around quite a bit. I have put out white milk jugs in previous years that seems to scare them away from my garden.

  2. We had deer problems but I moved my garden closer to the house and I haven't seen deer tracks through it yet this year. I also like companion plants like nasturtium and marigolds. they make it look pretty while keeping out unwanted pest oh and the nasturtium do double duty as they also edible. I like to put the flowers in salads because they make it look pretty and colorful and add a peppery zip.

  3. Great tip, Living Vintage. Aren't marigolds edible too? Didn't realize they kept away deer though.