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Fruit Growers: Protect Trees From Deer Damage

Posted by Jennifer Smith on

Fruit growers may be rolling their eyes already. They know that deer like to eat fruit; and they know that deer will walk on their properties. However, they may not know that deer are not just after fruit, but after fruit trees in the orchard. 

Beginning in September, deer will shed the velvet from their antlers in preparation for the rut season, destroying tree bark and the appearance of trees. (The warm weather from summer causes the velvet to dry out. This is the reason for the shedding.) 

Keep deer away: Orchard Management 

Fruit growers with young trees should protect them from deer damage before early fall with tree guards. Tree guards easily wrap around tree barks, protecting not just the trunk of trees but also what's about to grow. As trees grow, orchard managers may consider installing deer fence around the entire orchard. 

While deer don't set out to actively destroy trees, this is a natural part of the process moving into the fall season.