We are contemplating planting a native hedge and up to 40 garden trees, but have about four roe deer in our garden three or four times a week. What action can we take to protect the hedge and trees?
To protect your hedge, I suggest that the solution may be to erect a double fence of wire netting 1.2m or so high, well pegged-down, with a white electric fencing tape on offset insulators at 2ft 6in from ground level to deter the roe from jumping in. This should be enough without using an electric unit. Plant 2ft to 3ft whips in the middle. Small plants get away quicker and the roe will not be able to reach them until they have established and bushed out.
Eventually, your shrubs will grow through the mesh and can be trimmed outside it so that it is invisible, while still ensuring that the deer can?t creep through the hedge in the thornless gaps where you have used broadleaves.
If you can?t deer-proof the garden, a dog loose at night on your property also works. The ornamental trees will have to be protected. For standards such as cherry, use 1.2m tree shelters and for shrubs such as escallonia, try wide-diameter plastic mesh tubes. For the same reason as the hedge, choose smaller plants and keep watering them. It won?t look pretty at first, and I cannot guarantee results.