Deer and Garden Plants
Did you know that geraniums are plants that can grow easily in different environments? If you want to grow them, you should worry about animals like deer, but do deer eat geraniums?
Perhaps you are a gardener living in a rural area with many deer. You don’t have to worry because this article provides you with the answer as to why deers eat geraniums. Let’s get started!
Do Deer Eat Geraniums?
It is wonderful to have a geranium garden surrounding your house for aesthetic purposes. Many people love geraniums because they are not too difficult to grow. To get amazing results when you grow them, you only need to cut them to make new ones, provide enough sun, and don’t overwater them.
In addition to that, geraniums come in various smells, including spice, mint, nuts, and fruits. You don’t want to guess, but also, do deer like to eat geraniums? Keep scrolling to find out.
Unfortunately, geraniums are not one of the deer’s favorite foods, but are geraniums deer-resistant? Well, they serve as a plant that deer cannot consume. Deer avoid geraniums because of their bitter taste, strong smell, and high level of toxicity, causing deers to prevent them.
If you are not sure if geraniums are the best for you? They range in a thousand species. Some grow in colder climates, while others like them. Keep reading the article to find out when deer prefer to eat geraniums.
The Season When Deer Eat Geraniums
Even though geraniums might not be a favorite snack for deer, you cannot protect a garden from them with deer-resistant plants. If the mood is right, geraniums can be consumed from February to October during the cold months.
Furthermore, deer frequently consume anything that crosses their path because they cannot access more palatable options.
In addition, deer may eat geraniums at any time, depending on the amount of rainfall, availability of other food, location, temperature difference, and deer population. Generally, deer will avoid geraniums if they find more delectable food choices.
Do Geraniums Grow Back After Being Gnawed on By Deer
Geraniums and annuals are both likely to recover from the deer damage. Regular deadheading and pruning are beneficial to pelargoniums and can resist harsh trimming. Once you become aware of the damage, make an effort to keep the plant away from deer while it grows back.
After a few weeks, you will get a ton of fresh blooms and foliage. To promote new growth, you can use a slow-release fertilizer.
Deer causes damage that is unlikely to affect the perennial geraniums. They have a rapid rate of growth and ought to recover and ought to recover faster from light grazing.
To safeguard the plant while it grows again, you can find methods to protect it from deer. The plant might rebloom in the middle to end of the summer if given a chance. Keep reading to learn how to make geraniums deer resistant in the next section.
Tips on How to Grow Geraniums
Even though you can grow geraniums from seeds or by dividing existing plants, stem cuttings are the quickest and hardiest plants requiring little assistance to develop once you establish them. Here is how to grow geraniums from plant cuttings:
Create the Cuts you Need
The best time to take cuttings from a geranium plant is during spring or summer when the plant is in bloom. Cut the stem one to two inches above the node, then remove any leaves.
Decide Where to Plant
Choose a spot that will provide enough shade while your geranium establishes itself if you plant it in an outdoor container. You can move your plants to an area with sunlight once the roots have grown. Make sure there are sufficient drainage holes if you plant your geranium in a pot.
Get Your Soil Ready
First, begin your cuttings in warm, moist, draining potting soil. Use a rooting hormone for treatment to assist in establishing itself quickly.
Sow Your Cutting
Plant your cutting in a soiled-filled pot. Take the plant out and expose it to the sun to enable faster growth. After a month, it should be full of flowers, and you will have an option of leaving it in the pot or transferring it to your garden.
How to Make Geraniums Deer-Resistant
There are many deer-repellent techniques that you can try using to keep deer from your geraniums. However, none of them is 100% guaranteed to work. You can combine the following methods to make your flower beds more secure. They include:
Protecting Geraniums With Other Plants
After planting Geraniums in your garden, you don’t want deer to cause havoc. There are several alternative plants you can add to your yard to reduce deer from destroying your geraniums. Using these plants to their full potential gives some eye-catching variation to a landscape and is generally preferred over using fences that block views.
Furthermore, some of the plants, such as daffodil and foxglove, are toxic to deer, while others, like lamb’s ear, have a texture that they don’t like and strong scents that make the deer more likely to avoid them.
Examples of these plants include; sage, mint, basil, and lavender. When you protect your geraniums and other desired plant life in your garden, consider including these plants in your garden.
Create a Less Appealing Yard
A deer will always leave an area if they don’t feel safe; you need to give them a sense of danger. You don’t need to harm the deer. To scare the deer, install a motion-sensitive sprinkler to spray stray deer.
Additionally, if you have a dog, make sure it spends a lot of time in or near the garden. You may also scatter some of their fur about the area to remind the deer of the dog’s presence.
If you want to make a significant difference, change the landscape. Making your yard more difficult to navigate involves adding levels, steps, slopes, and other variations in the landscape. If the deer aren’t interested in your yard, they won’t get near your geraniums.
If you have a garden at your home, make sure to harvest any fruits or vegetables you cultivated on your land as soon as they are ready to be picked.
A deer might mistake this for an open-air buffet if left out too long. Your geraniums might be the next thing the deer eat, if they have already, once they determine that your yard is the place to be.
Build a Fence
Not everyone should build a fence, even if it is one of the most effective methods to keep deer away despite its high cost of fencing and appearance. You have probably encountered wire-mesh fencing, the most common type of fencing.
In certain cases, you can use polypropylene to construct these deer fences, and because polypropylene mesh is virtually undetectable, it solves the aesthetic problems some people have with fencing.
Another common option for people who don’t want an unsightly fence in their yard is electric fencing. These fences entice deer to posts, mostly using bait. These posts then shock the deer with startling electric shock; this influences the behavior that acts as a barrier.
Building a fence is a quick method of teaching a deer to stay out of the yard, but electric fencing is not as effective as a physical barrier fence. A wooden privacy fence or chain link fencing can help you achieve this goal if you consider building a wall to enclose your yard.
Use of Deer Repellents
Using deer repellents to reduce damage might be the least successful, but it is still very effective at minimizing crop damage. Deer repellents typically work better in small agricultural plots and when attached to some specific type of plants.
You can also get other deer deterrents on the market. In your backyard, you can consider utilizing mechanical deer deterrents and hornets for vehicle use. Indeed, deer cause a lot of harm, but many ways to reduce crop damage are always possible.
Use of Automatic Sprinklers
Install motion-sensor sprinklers close to your garden so that when a deer decides to enter the park, the sprinklers will be activated and deter it from getting any closer.
After installing the sprinklers, it is essential to avoid placing the sprinklers inside the flower bed and instead put them beside it.
Our DIY Harmless Deer Repellant Recipe
Did you know that you can make your repellent mixtures at home? It is one thing you can do just like many other flower owners have done before you. The popularity of making the repellent mixtures should give you some idea of how simple and effective the method is.
Total time: 24hrs
- 2 eggs
- 1 gallon of water (3.1 liters)
- 1 bowl
- 2 cups
- Beat two eggs in a bowl that contains two cups of water.
- Using an eggbeater or similar appliance, blend the eggs and the water at high speed.
- Take the mixture and add it to a gallon of water.
- Allow the mixture to sit for about 24 hours.
- On the area surrounding your flowers, apply the repellant.
- Re-do as many times as you see is necessary.
Which Other Pests Chew on Geraniums
As you have learned, geranium flowers can be a range of beautiful flowers and are also one of the easiest plants to grow. Other than that, geraniums look so pretty hanging on planters, window boxes, the garden, the deck, or the patio.
Geranium is a charming plant with vibrant blooms and lush greenery that fills in the gaps and gives the plant a healthy look full of vigor. Geranium is a wonderful choice for a low-maintenance, simple-to-grow plant that eventually rewards you with lovely flowers.
Although deer can cause a lot of damage to a flowerbed, they are not the most common pest that eats geraniums. You are more likely to encounter geranium budworm that eats geraniums from the inside out.
Geraniums are, fortunately, quite pest-resistant. Squirrels and other animal pests are unlikely to eat your flowers because even deer are not particularly fond of them, but that doesn’t mean you should not care about anything.
Aphids, mites, and the geraniums budworm, in particular, frequently harm geranium plants. Before going further, keep reading to know more about geranium budworms and how to treat your garden when they attack geranium plants.
In warm areas, the geraniums frequently develop geranium budworms, sometimes called tobacco budworms, which are the caterpillar stage of a moth. They gorge on growing blooms, giving them a ragged, “nibbled on” appearance.
Furthermore, budworms will still leave behind feces after they have left, which accomplishes nothing for your garden and only makes it appear worse.
How to Get Rid of Geranium Budworms in Your Garden
If you have geraniums in the garden, you should prepare to handle these pests if they show up. Budworms feed on the buds’ interior, making the geranium chemical treatment effective. Keep on reading this article to learn the ways of dealing with geranium budworms when they attack geraniums in your garden.
Inspecting the Plants
The first solution to get rid of geranium budworms is to inspect your crops. Check your geraniums frequently for indications of an infestation. Naturally, you should search for the budworms themselves.
The budworms have the following physical features:
- They have black micro spines.
- They are either green or yellow, depending on their age.
- They are encrusted with tiny black spines.
Consider Treating Your Plants
The second solution is treating your geraniums. After removing as many budworms, broken buds, and budworm eggs as you can, It’s time to treat your geraniums. Use a pesticide that contains Bacillus thuringiensis, a bacterial substance that can eradicate almost any species of caterpillar.
Make sure to spray the plants vigorously. The worms will not be able to survive long enough to make any more bites after they have consumed the bacteria.
Checking for Holes in Bud
Checking for holes in buds is the third solution to get rid of geranium budworms This is like doing another second visual inspection of your geraniums. Carefully check the spots in the buds. These holes show that the budworms have made their way inside each plant. If you manage to see any bud that has damage on the plant, cut it and throw them away.
Eliminate the Pest
Elimination of pests is the fourth solution. When you notice the geranium budworms in your flowers, consider removing them with your hands. You can pick them off as many as possible by placing them in a soapy water container.
Another common pest that would be delighted to feed on your magnificent red or pink geraniums is the geranium sawfly. The reason behind the name “sawfly” is that female adults utilize an organ that resembles a serrated straw to slice apart plants and lay their eggs inside them.
Even though their name is “sawflies,” they resemble wasps more closely but lack the segmented body and thorax.
Nevertheless, you should not be concerned about adult flies because most of the time, the caterpillar offspring is the one that causes a lot of harm. Remember that their name is “geranium sawflies” because they consume geraniums. As a result, be careful around your geraniums because the sawflies can happily make a lunch out of it.
The geranium sawfly larvae are grayish-green in color with dark brown heads, making them easy to recognize. They will consume the plant’s leaves, leaving ragged holes that make your plants appear half-dead. If you disturb them, they fall from the leaves and land on the ground.
In addition, the larvae will gradually climb back up the plant and begin nibbling on the leaves again, causing severe harm and decreasing the vigor they can harm the young plant.
Methods for Controlling Geranium Sawflies
Since geranium sawflies are not caterpillars, conventional management techniques won’t be very effective. Therefore, the method you read earlier for controlling budworms won’t work against the sawflies.
If you don’t have much time to spend handpicking, the sawflies can be a little difficult to get rid of them. However, handpicking is a successful strategy if you have the necessary time and nerves of steel,
On top of that, the birds love to eat the larvae so much. You can put a bird feeder next to your geraniums to entice the birds to start feasting on sawfly larvae.
The birds flock to the feeder for food, but they stay for the nourishing insect and larvae meal from the sawflies and other pests on your plants. Birds are great natural approaches because they play a significant role in managing insect populations.
Large infestations require more drastic measures, such as using pesticides, while a minor infestation, like handpicking or using birds, may be so effective.
You can use horticultural oils, such as neem oil. If it’s not working, try applying stronger natural or synthetic insecticides. You can apply neem oil sprays during active infestations. Broad-spectrum insecticides will also eliminate helpful pollinators.
Insecticides with pyrethrin as the main ingredient, such as Spinosad, should be your other option. Another thing to note is that try to avoid using insecticidal methods of control until just when your geraniums begin to bloom.
Some Other Pests
Other pests that can cause harm to geraniums include:
- Cabbage loopers (cabbage moth)
Try using a pesticide or handpicking to get rid of these pests mentioned above. Put a three- or four-inch cardboard collar in the soil around the plant’s base to prevent the cutworms; this will stop the cutworms from chocking off your seedlings before they have a chance to grow.
Our Favourite Pest Prevention Tips
The following is a list of some of our favorite pest prevention tips to ensure the safety of geraniums in your garden:
- Bring ladybugs to your garden. They will eat aphids, which are another common issue in geranium beds.
- Use insecticidal soap to spray your plants. It works well against whiteflies when applied once for a couple of days.
- As soon as an infestation appears, apply horticultural oil.
- Use horticultural oils only at night, such as neem oil. In the intensity of the midday sun, these oils can degrade.
How to Care for Geraniums
The following are some of the ways of caring for geraniums, they include:
Annual geraniums don’t need pruning, although it is still good to deadhead them frequently. Trimming the plant promotes new growth and shields it from illness.
Furthermore, trimming enable the production of more flowers. After the flowers fade, remove any dead leaves and flower stalks at the growing if the plant appears long-legged and skinny. As a result of this, more blossoms, as well as the new branch, will grow.
When the soil dries out, geraniums will develop more successfully in between waterings. Select soil that drains effectively since good drainage is essential. It is preferable to water thoroughly and deeply and then wait until the soil has dried before watering again.
For geraniums, water the plant from the base, avoiding the leaves. Geraniums that receive too much water may get yellow, dropping foliage and withered flowers.
After getting information about geraniums and deer, you can conclude that if the conditions are unpleasant, deer can eat anything. To safeguard your garden, consider using fences, repellents, and other deer deterrent methods. Read our article and find out Do Deer Eat Impatiens?