Hydrangeas (Hydrangea spp.) offer beautiful, big blossoms in myriad hues, including white, pink, blue, and purple, that add vibrancy to the garden. These plants can bloom from spring through fall depending on the variety and geographical region where they are grown. Hydrangeas are hardy shrubs, and some even grow as vines. Although deer don't typically snack on hydrangeas, they are not deer-resistant plants. If you live in an area with a high deer population, you may need to take some measures to protect your plants.
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When Deer May Likely Graze
Hydrangeas are not likely a deer's first choice of plants to nibble, but if deer are hungry, you may find them eating hydrangea flowers, stems, and even branches. Winter is the season when you're more likely to find deer eating hydrangeas. During the colder months, food can be scarce, and it can be challenging for deer to find sufficient food, which means they'll eat whatever they can find, even your beloved hydrangeas.
Although in many areas flowers aren't in bloom in winter, deer may feast on the stems and branches. This can affect the stems and branches and interfere with the following season's blooms, so protecting them is imperative.
Measures to Protect Your Garden
There are different methods you can use to protect your garden from deer. One option is deer repellent, which can be an easy option that won't limit or alter your view of your hydrangeas. Spray a deer repellent on leaves, stems, and branches once a month, carefully reading and following the label directions. If deer are really hungry, though, a repellent may not be effective.
Another method is to wrap burlap around your hydrangeas to cover and protect the plants and secure it with string or twine. If you have a hydrangea tree, wrap burlap around the "trunk" or main stem, as the bark can attract deer. If you do this in winter, the benefits are twofold: keeping deer away and protecting the plants from the cold.
Placing a fence around your garden that has a minimum height of 4 feet is an option for preventing deer from enjoying a hydrangea buffet. A fence may not be aesthetically pleasing, but it can save your hydrangeas from being damaged by foraging deer. Using chicken wire attached to stakes to create a fence is a suitable option and you can not only encircle the hydrangea but also cover it overhead for additional protection.