Disney’s adorable cartoon Bambi may come to mind when you think of deer. If that’s the case, you may not think that you need a deer fence for garden protection. But once you have two months’ worth of gardening under your belt, Bambi starts looking a little less cute. One effective way to keep deer away from your garden and landscaping is to install a deer-proof garden fence.
From poly mesh garden fence kits to long-term wooden structures, here are a few of the pros and cons of the most common types of deer fencing for gardens.
1. Metal Mesh Fencing
A metal grid material is one of the most popular types of deer fencing for gardens. Because the grid allows deer to see through it to your tasty-looking plants, it needs to be taller than a deer can jump.
Oregon’s Department of Fish and Wildlife recommends that you install a metal fence that’s a minimum of 6.5 feet tall. However, since most deer can jump at least 7 feet high, many professionals recommend a fence height of 7.5 to 10 feet for a truly deer-proof fence. A good rule of thumb to follow is that the more see-through your fencing is, the taller it should be.
2. Poly Mesh Fencing
Polypropylene mesh, often simply called “poly mesh,” is a grid-like, plastic material that you can attach to wooden or metal posts, similar to metal mesh fencing. Many people use poly mesh as a deer fence for garden safety, thanks to its affordability and ease of installation.
Poly mesh for a deer-proof fence should have openings no larger than two inches, or the deer may get trapped or injured. Follow the same height guidelines as those for metal mesh.
3. Wood Privacy Fencing
Wood fencing can be effective because it obscures a deer’s view, and deer typically don’t like jumping into an area they can’t see. However, you’ll want this type of fence to have as few gaps as possible to be effective.
4. Vinyl Fencing
In terms of deer fencing, vinyl has similar pros and cons to wood, although, per square foot, vinyl fencing costs are lower.
Pros of Vinyl Fencing
- Unique: Can be customized to your style.
- Short: Height only needs to be about 5 feet to deter deer.
- Seclusion: Provides privacy.
- Budget-friendly: Generally more affordable than wooden fencing.
- Low-maintenance: Upkeep and maintenance are minimal compared to wood.
5. Chain Link Fencing
When considering a way to keep deer away, chain link fencing might not be the first thing you think of, but it can be effective as long as it’s tall enough. Don’t eliminate chain link fencing as an option because it doesn’t have the appeal of other fencing types. There are many modern styles available nowadays, including non-metal options that have an upgraded look you just might love.