Protect Fruit Trees from Deer
In this area, we’ve had a lot of problems with deer and young fruit trees. They’ll do one of two things. They’ll either eat all the leaves as they come out in the spring, or they’ll use them for rubs in the fall. Either way, they can destroy a fruit tree.
So, in order to protect them, I’ve used concrete reinforcement wire. This is twenty feet of wire that was cut off and then joined together to make a circle around the entire plant. That works really well. The only problem you may have is that if you have high winds, this can blow off. In those cases, I use a stake such as this, to help anchor it to the ground.
It works well in keeping the deer off. Once that growth is out this far, I don’t have any more problems with deer. You can often buy concrete reinforcement wire by the foot. You don’t have to buy a complete roll. Therefore, figure out how much you’ll need – twenty foot per tree – and then you can buy that buy the foot rather than an entire roll.
This protection should be fine until the tree outgrows it. By the time it outgrows it, it will be large enough that the deer won’t bother the tree anymore.
This feature story prepared with Ward Upham, Kansas State University Research and Extension Research Assistant. For more information, visit your local county extension office or visit our website at KansasGreenYards.org.