Preventing Deer From Eating Roses?

Tips from the ThriftyFun community for preventing deer from eating your roses.

Human Hair

To keep deer from eating plants: a friend goes to beauty shops and gets the hair that has been cut and takes it home and hangs it on fences around the plants. They do not like the smell or something to do with the human hair.


Shrimp Shells

A friend of mine goes to the coast and buys a lot of fresh shrimp to resell. He says that the shell peeled off of boiled shrimp and also the scraps they have from deheading and packaging the shrimp keep deer out of his garden. Sounds like an expensive deer repellent to me though, I would go with the human hair trick

by Ladonna

Wolf Urine

The landscapers in my area had trouble with deer eating all the saplings they had planted and used wolf urine. I got it at a hunter's store. I've used it to keep cats out of my yard. If it rains, you must re-apply it. If you accidentally get it wet when watering your lawn, back up quickly. It really stinks. Do each corner of your yard and then just the odd drop or two around the perimeter. Worked for me!

By Marianne

Several Ideas

The only thing I know of besides fencing out or shooting the deer is a repellent such as Predator Urine or Irish spring soap hung in things like panty hose or mesh produce bags in and around the rose beds. Also maybe a Large Yard Dog would discourage them.



Expert Advice

"Noise-makers and flashing lights, including loud radios and motion detecting devices startle deer, but the reaction from your nearest neighbors may startle you as well. Strong-smelling soaps and human hair hung in bushes did not work in CSU tests, but bars of Irish Spring soap "planted" on stakes kept deer out of my rose garden successfully last year, until my dogs ate them and spent several days foaming at the mouth.

The best way to minimize deer damage is to plant "deer resistant" plants, and avoid plants that deer favor. A number are water-conserving as well. In general, deer don't care for plants with fuzzy leaves or those that taste bitter. They avoid poisonous plants instinctively.

Annuals with good deer resistance include ageratum, ice plant, pincushion flower, verbena and zinnias. Perennials to select include Apache plume, most of the artemesia and sagebrush family, bleeding heart, clematis, coneflowers and daffodils, delphiniums, foxglove, wild geraniums, iris, poppies, peonies, Russian sage, tansy and yarrow. For shrubs and trees, try ash, barberry, box elder, bush cinquefoil, butterfly bush (buddlia), cotoneaster, currants and gooseberries, euonymous, forsythia, lilac (though my deer love them), mahonia, and viburnum.


Species roses, shrub roses and old garden roses are more resistant to deer than tender hybrid teas, and far hardier. Plants deer especially dislike include catmint, chives, lavender, sage, spearmint, thyme and yarrow-all useful and easy to grow in this area."

Carole Williams


By ThriftyFun

Deer Repellent Recipes

Here is a couple deer repellent recipes:

Dried Blood Repellent for Deer and Rabbits

Dried blood should be available at your local garden store. It is a biproduct of cattle beef processing. It comes in a powdered form and is effective for discouraging deer and rabbits from eating your plants.

Egg Deer Repellent

Deer don't like eggs! This recipe is easy to make and fairly inexpensive, it calls for 18 eggs. You can also make small batches.


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By Stefan (Guest Post)
September 9, 20070 found this helpful

Years ago, I lived on Catalina Island (off the coast of L.A., Calif.) where deer were constantly destroying my roommate's roses and small fruit trees. We tried hair, urine, soap and all kinds of things to no avail. Finally, we tied several cans together in bunches all tied to a trip line that surrounded our garden just outside our sliding glass door. A couple of nights later I heard something outside the door and flung open the curtains.


There was the deer that had somehow climbed over our trip line. I startled it and it took off, this time, catching the trip line dragging the line and cans banging behind it, chasing it and its buddies for several hundred feet. We about died laughing and we never had deer problems again!

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Bronze Request Medal for All Time! 66 Requests
September 17, 20070 found this helpful

This was in my local newspaper just the other day: chunks of deodorant soap. The effect will last for a week before the soap has to be replaced. If you have a Walgreens in your area try there, they often have deodorant soap on sale 4/$1.00.

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May 6, 20210 found this helpful

What a the name of soap

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Silver Post Medal for All Time! 267 Posts
May 6, 20210 found this helpful

This was posted over 10 years ago so I don't think the original poster will notice your question. Most people recommend Irish Spring or a similar type of strong smelling soap.

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February 26, 20170 found this helpful

We live in the foothills of the Allegany mountains in the US. The product we use is an all-natural solution whose main ingredient is Coyote Urine called Deer Repellent Packs.


It has got to be the easiest product to use... just hang it on the plants/areas you want to protect for up to 90 days use.

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