How to Deer Proof Your Vegetable Garden


Growing your own vegetables is rewarding, and can save you a lot of money at the grocery store. Unfortunately, a vegetable garden can be a big temptation to a deer. If your garden is not protected from deer, you are going to wake up one morning to find that half of your vegetables have been gobbled up. All of your hard work will have gone down the drain. You must take action to keep the deer out of your vegetable garden.

Step 1

Install a fence. Fencing will keep deer out of a vegetable garden if the fence is the right height. When a deer is hungry, it can jump pretty high. Seven to 8 feet high is ideal. Also, make sure your fence doesn't have any room at the bottom for the deer to crawl through.

Step 2

Plant flowers around your yard that deer are not attracted to. English lavender and Lenten rose are two good flowers to start off with. Then you can add Jacob's ladder, or some irises. Of course, when deer are starving, they will eat anything, but sticking to plants that are not preferred by deer will keep the majority of them away.

Step 3

Place a pile of human or dog hair in a nylon stocking and hang it around your vegetable garden. Using unwashed hair will work better because the natural scents will be intact. You can always ask a salon or pet groomer to set hair aside for you.

Step 4

Create a repellent spray. Mix the cayenne pepper, hot sauce, water and vegetable oil together. Pour some into an empty spray bottle. Spray your vegetables and surrounding plants with this mixture. The deer will not like the smell and will stay far away. You must reapply this after each rainfall.

Step 5

Set moth balls around the perimeter of your yard. This will keep the deer from stepping foot on your property. Just make sure that you do not put the moth balls in your vegetable garden because they are poisonous. Setting them around the perimeter of your yard is much safer and just as effective.

Tips and Warnings

  • Do not use store-bought repellents on your vegetables. They contain chemicals that will seep into the vegetable. When you eat the vegetable later on, you will eat the chemical.

Things You'll Need

  • Fencing
  • English lavender
  • Lenten rose
  • Jacob's ladder
  • Iris
  • Nylon stockings
  • Human hair
  • Dog hair
  • 5 tbsp. cayenne pepper
  • 2 tbsp. hot sauce
  • 1 gallon water
  • 1 tbsp. vegetable oil
  • Empty spray bottle
  • Moth balls


  • KDKA: Guarding Your Gardens From Deer
  • The Garden Lady: Deer Proof Plants
  • Oregon State University: Reduce Deer Damage in Your Yard
Keywords: repelling deer, protecting vegetable gardens, deer repellent

About this Author

Alicia Bodine has been a professional writer for six years. She has produced thousands of articles for online publications such as Demand Studios, Bright Hub, Associated Content and WiseGeek. Bodine is also the current cooking guru for LifeTips. She has received awards for being a top content producer.