Deer ate my rhodies.

chester_grant(6)May 27, 2006

Deer have eaten some of this spring's new leaves growing on my hybrids - the maxis weren't advanced enough to be damaged thank goodness.

The question is - should I remove the storks that are left or leave them. In other words which strategy will increase the probability of secondary growth. I would guess I should remove the storks?

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rhodyman(SE PA, USDA Z6)

Leave them. Leaves usually last about 18 months so in 18 months your plant will look like nothing happened unless you let the deer come back for more. Once the deer find something they like, they will be back from now to eternity to look for it. In the winter I use deer netting, but it is not practical when new grow is coming out and buds are opening. The plants grow right through the netting and the deer eat it. You will have to use a spray on deterrent or a fence. I resorted to a fence to protect my deciduous azaleas. Right after I planted them, the deer came in and ate all of the flower buds.

    Bookmark   May 27, 2006 at 10:32AM
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Thanks - the deer ate 75% of the new leaves on one very special rodie. I am inclined to transplant it to increase the probability of it ever reaching some kind of stature.......My observersion is that deer tend to eat rhodies only in the winter when there is little of their preferred food around - I guess nice tender spring rhodie shoots are just too good for these large garden pests to resist.
The good news is that I almost transplanted a really nice scintillation - in order to give it more sun - to this area of the garden; luckily I procrastinated.

    Bookmark   May 27, 2006 at 2:09PM
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rhodyman(SE PA, USDA Z6)

Scintillation tend to get sun burn so I would keep it in part shade.

    Bookmark   May 27, 2006 at 4:05PM
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