Spring has finally staggered and stumbled into Cincinnati. It’s been a whole week and a half since I wore my heavy coat, so I finally can take it to the cleaners. A less rewarding chore presents itself—it’s time to maintain the outside of my house.

I admire those who love yard work, but I am not one of them. I abhor temperatures over 75 degrees, kneeling, squatting, dirt under my fingernails, and bugs. Scott feels the same, so last year we paid a landscaper big bucks to rip out and replace the overgrown shrubbery in front of our house. Our new plantings included several dozen of something called “coral bells.”

Bambi's favorite. It eventually will grow stalks and flowers if it is not eaten.

After a few weeks we noticed that the coral bells were not thriving. In fact, they seemed to be disappearing. Closer inspection revealed hoofprints around the foliage.

Now, I’m an animal person. One of the things I enjoy most about my suburban neighborhood is the wildlife that comes out of the “privacy woods” behind our houses. If it were up to me, I’d probably plant the stuff they like and sit around watching Bambi and Thumper chow down. But there are neighbors to placate, property values to maintain. And a critter café could get expensive.

This year Scott did some research and found a product called “Deer Scram.” The manufacturer, Enviro Pro, claims that this product won’t harm the animal, but stimulates a strong fear response by emitting an odor that deer and rabbits associate with their dead kin. The granules are unobtrusive, and humans can’t smell them. You can even order the product from (Is there anything you can’t order from Scott bought the Deer Scram, and it’s working so far.

Who, me?

This reminded me that my sister-in-law Adrienne had a similar problem a few years ago. She lives in a handsome home at the edge of a golf course. Now Adie does love gardening, and her flower beds are showpieces. But she, too, was losing her plants to rabbits and deer.

Someone told Adie that coyote urine would repel the uninvited guests. This also was not cheap. (You know, it’s tough to get the coyotes to pee into those little cups.) But she sent away for a jug of the urine and applied it to her flower beds, and for a while all was well.

Until the evening when Adie looked out and saw an animal standing on her lawn.

No, not a deer or a rabbit.


Right on the edge of a golf course in Fort Wayne, Indiana.

I don’t know what she was so upset about. He didn’t want to eat the plants, after all. And her next application of coyote urine was likely to be free.

  I’m linking up with the Moonshine Grid on yeah write.  Click the link to check out a variety of the weekend’s best blog posts.



7 thoughts on “BAMBI GO HOME

  1. Ugh. I so understood this post. We tried getting clipped hair from the hair salon, urine (don’t ask), the sprays. But I’ve had luck with Sweeny’s Deer Repellent. It comes in these little gray bells that you put right near your plants. I hang them on my garden fence. For the deer will sail right over a fence. It works. It’s the only thing I have ever found that works this well. Best thing is that doesn’t wash off. Pig’s blood I think.

  2. We live in a condo and only have flower boxes and are very new at it. This will be our second year planting them. I had no idea of what lengths people have to go to in order to maintain landscaping! I wonder if they sell coyote urine on Amazon? Great post!

  3. The deer see my flower garden as their personal buffet. They usually wait until a bud is about to open before clipping it. Their timing is uncanny.

  4. We tried everything and also inhereted a coyote. Finally we were told to build a fence but on an inward slant because they jump straight up and down and get deterred by the angle. It worked. who knew?

  5. Thanks for all the tips! I ran the post by Adie, who says she is now using old onion and tomato bags saved over the winter, each with a whole bar of Irish Spring Soap, original scent, to repel the deer. She says nothing works on the rabbits. I’ll pass on your suggestions. And yes, Bee, they do sell coyote urine on Amazon (I just checked), although Adie says she got hers from a firm in Maine called Leg Up Enterprises. Don’t you love that name?

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