Deer are curious creatures but timid just the same. They are vegetarians, grazing on grasses, fruit, shrubs, flowers and tree leaves. Deer prefer forested habitats and the protection they provide. If your grow area is away from property dense with trees, you probably have nothing to worry about. If they do make their way to your garden, you most likely will not catch them in the act.
They venture from the cover of the forest at night, when they are less likely to encounter humans. Once the deer discover your cannabis garden, they will feast on the leaves, buds and seedlings. You may never know they were there until morning when you discover their tracks and the damage done.
An important point to note is the cannabinoid levels in marijuana increases as the plants mature. Most herbivores find the taste of cannabis unpleasant; not so with deer, until the plant becomes mature. At that point, it is not as delectable to their palates and the threat diminishes.
Until nature takes its course, what can be done to keep deer from devouring your marijuana crop? There are several precautions you can implement, the first and most obvious would be to install fencing around your property. This may be a good idea for more reasons than just keeping deer away, actually. The fence should be made of sturdy material and at least 8' high. Deer typically can jump about 6', but will clear an 8' fence if spooked. Make sure the slats are close together and installed firmly into the ground in order to disable the deer from slipping through or crawling underneath the fence in an attempt to get to your garden.
An alternative to a solid fence is to install an electric fence. Some folks lure the deer by spreading peanut butter on it or to a foil tag attached to the fence. When the fence is engaged and the deer comes for his treat, receiving a shock or two usually dissuades him from trying again.
Deer are frightened when approached, startled or by the sudden appearance of bright lights. Utilizing this knowledge, you can come up with some effective ways to keep deer out of your marijuana garden. Have motion detecting lights installed at key locations of your property. Be sure to have the light pointed high enough so it doesn't shine on the plants but low enough to startle the deer and send him running. Another method is to install motion sensitive 'scarecrow sprinklers' whereby the intruder is blasted with a high-pressured spray of water upon entry.
If these options seem out of your budget or you just don't have the time, scent repellents can be used to keep deer out of your cannabis garden. Deer have a very keen sense of smell. Many scents are offensive to them and will serve the purpose of keeping them away. The following is a list of effective deer repellents:
- Human hair. Pick the hair from your hair brushes and 'decorate' the plants with it much as hanging tinsel on a Christmas tree.
- Human Pee. Have the household pee in a cup or a jar and dispense it over the ground surrounding your pot plants. Rain washes it away, so this will have to be repeated as needed.
- Rotten eggs. Make a spray mixture of 20% eggs and 80% water. Spray all over the cannabis plants.
- Garlic. Crush in nylon stockings and hang from trees.
- Predator urine. Coyotes, foxes and bobcats are natural deer predators. Predator urine can be purchased online. Check labels for application directions.
- Scented bar soap. Drill a small hole, push thru fishing line and hang near the plants. It has been reported deer are repelled by Dial and Lifebuoy in particular.
- Fabric softener sheets hung from trees.
- Moth balls. Place several in a nylon stocking and hang nearby.
These are some tips that should help. It is important to note that deer could become accustomed to the repellents you use. Therefore, change them up periodically and combine with motion lights or sprinklers as an added measure.