Deer have safe urban haven

Today is the last day of May.
The sun starts shining through the windows earlier every morning. The deer, meanwhile, continue to pick off flowers in my yard almost daily.
Last fall, I purchased several dozen special “Canada 150” tulips. Since squirrels like bulbs in the fall, I covered the plantings with chicken wire to prevent them from digging up the bulbs before the ground froze.
It worked. No bulbs were lost.
This spring, as those same tulips began popping through the surface, we noticed the deer were shearing the leaves right at ground level. So we took the chicken wire and raised it over the tulips, and were heartened when the buds began to show.
Alas, we were away on the weekend and those buds popped through the wire. The deer must have waited patiently for that to happen as upon our return on Sunday, every bud that had popped through with the heat last Thursday, Friday, and Saturday was snipped off at the wire level.
I think we may see three actual tulips from the dozens that were planted.
Meanwhile, our day lily plants have seldom ever attracted the attention of the deer that pass through our yard. But this year, those green shoots also proved popular with them.
Several years ago, we planted a cedar hedge along the property line and for the first five years, the plants were buried under snow.
The hedge now is almost six feet high and the deer picking off the tender green shoots in the winter is trimming both ends. It is frustrating.
I should be heading to the greenhouses to purchase flowers for the season. It used to be automatic but over the past two years, those four-egged creatures– though cute–seem to be really attracted to the flowers and have been brave enough to even walk up to the steps and chew away at the buds.
They have that uncanny ability to find those plants within a couple of days of planting.
I know those young deer that cling close to their mothers are playful and cute. I have watched as the does teach the bambis to check both ways before they cross Second Street East.
I have watched as the same doe has herded her two young ones off the road and onto the sidewalk of Victoria Avenue.
I have counted as many as four deer in the yard at one time, and I truly believe those mothers are teaching their youngsters where the free and tasty meals can be found year-round.
Fort Frances is now the perfect safe urban deer environment.

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