Home of the Practically Perfect Pink Phlox and other native plants for pollinators

Sunday, November 30, 2008

Cease and Desist~~


Pursuant to your letter dated November 13, 2008, this  serves as notice to you that we claim rights to the wayback backyard and the use of all adjoining properties for grazing!

Signed,

The Deer Family


Dear Deer Family:

We demand that you Cease and Desist your occupation of the property known as Clay and Limestone's way back backyard and Garden of Benign Neglect~~immediately.

Signed
Gail, Head Gardener


editor's note: please read the comments and then  visit ...Cameron's is especially clever! g

75 comments:

  1. I think I can see that this is not going to be easy coming to some agreement with the Deer family. Others have tried and failed. Are they trying the 'squatters rights' strategy?

    Jan
    Always Growing

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  2. Jan,

    Indeed they have! I chased them out and closed the gates! My fault they got it but I am not sure the fences are high enough to keep Bambi and Mom out!

    It was quite funny to come face to face with one just off the patio!

    Gail

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  3. Those deer! You made such good arguements I can't imagine why they won't listen. So far the soap in my apple trees seems to be keeping them from nibbling.

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  4. Cinj,

    I am going to have to try the soap!

    Gail

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  5. Hi Gail, I think the deer have procured the opinions of a legal professional. You are in for extended negotiations and in the meantime, the grazing will continue. Yes to the soap!

    Hope your holiday was fun and fulfilling.

    Frances

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  6. I agree with Frances, it might be time to bring in a professional mediator. In the meantime, here's a strategy that might work for you: deer will not jump a fence if there is an obstacle (such as a shrub) beyond the fence. Experts recommend leaving about 2 or 3 feet between the shrub, bench or boulder and the fence. Of course, you also have to keep the gate closed.

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  7. This is a great battle we all get to follow along with. I am wondering who is going to win? And when will the authorities (men with guns) be called in?☺

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  8. Hmm, it looks like you have squatters! One thing that has been somewhat effective here was building a barrier along the deer trail to divert them to someone else's yard. I haven't seen them since. I laid sticks and debris over the entry area and lashed three tall branches together into a tripod to add height. So far so good!

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  9. The battle lines have been drawn! I have my tools in place and I will remember to shut the gate!

    Gail

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  10. This one looks like it'll run and run!

    I'm planning a different take on deer later on this week...

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  11. Oh dear, the deer have returned. I took some photos of deer on the roadside while in Nashville in October. Much better that they stay in those roadside woods. So will shutting the gate solve the problem?

    I guess I shouldn't gripe so much about the armodillos that dig up my garden constantly (gripe). They do a lot of damage (gripe again)for being so small but deer would be much worse.
    Meems

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  12. Funny......so funny......

    We do not get deer in my neck of the wood, so my garden is safe from them....

    I have to say beautiful looking creatures though.......

    Wonderfully thought out post......

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  13. Dearest Gail,

    I showed "my deer family" the photo and documents that you posted. They were ecstatic to learn that their relatives have made the trip safely to Tennessee.

    According to Ms. Jane Doe of Arbor Lea, her brother, John, went over the hills to Tennessee when they heard of a new "land rush" where squatters have rights. That's Jane's sister-in-law, Bambi II, in your photo.

    John hired a "big bucks" attorney, Mr. Antlers, a renowned "gouger" to assist with the "filing" of the proper paper. Being environmentally conscious, the paper was milled from local tree bark, therefore saving the cost of buying paper from a foreign source.

    Jane is concerned that the formal documents may have rubbed you the wrong way and wants you to know that the Doe family is usually quite polite and casual.

    Jane exclaimed that if Tennessee is that beautiful and so full of uneaten perennials, perhaps she and the rest of the extended family should start their journey before the snow gets too deep in the mountains.

    When Jane learned that you are also an avid gardener who "fawns" over your perennials, she was greatly encouraged.

    I shall send you advance warning if the members of the Doe family inform me that they are going elsewhere for the holidays this year.

    Sincerely,
    Cameron of Arbor Lea

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  14. A never ending battle in the garden, lol. I think the Deer may have the upper hand this time Gail. ;)

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  15. hee hee. Good luck Gail. I tend to agree with Frances. I think this will be a long and drawn out battle. One that will keep you occupied over the long winter months (and us entertained).
    PS Have I ever told you how much I love your "please have a seat" photo on the sidebar?? It's beautiful!

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  16. Gail, I have to stop laughing at Cameron's comment and compose myself .. . . .

    OK. Ahem. May I please secure your services as mediator or spokesperson? Not only have several families of deer moved in, mostly single mothers with children in tow, cousin Buck has been seen wandering about as well. And the neighborhood has totally gone to the rodents with an overabundance of grey squirrels and no acorns to feed them. I desperately need someone to speak with authority and not-so-gently encourage these interlopers to move along. My hydrangeas and azaleas are depending on it.

    Thank you!

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  17. Dear Gail:
    What about the way-wayback yard? And the way-way-wayback yard? Are they off limits too?

    Hopefully,
    The Deer Family

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  18. Ha! So, I just wanna know if they like salad? Lettuce, tomatoes, malabar spinach?!!

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  19. Cameron deserves some sort of award for most creative comment on a blog post.

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  20. Like squirrels - however annoying they are, they still manage to look charming.

    Snails aren't so lucky.

    Lucy

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  21. Fern,

    I so totally agree...I have asked her to post it on her blog...it is too good to be missed!

    Gail

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  22. Frances,

    I am sure they have...I see an endless court battle and I vow to take this to the highest court in the land! If that doesn't work Elmer Fudd is moving in!

    Gail

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  23. MMD,

    Mediation...that is my field!I will keep the fence barred! They can't make it over the shrubs...a good reason to leave the bush honeysuckle!

    gail

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  24. Tina,

    Elmer has been notified but he isn't very effective with wabbits; maybe deer are his thing!

    Gail

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  25. Dave,

    A barrier may be the thing to do...I think I see exactly their egress into the yard! One thing I have is plenty of limbs! Thanks for the idea!

    gail

    Ga

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  26. VP,

    This deer looked me in the eye and let me take her photo then leapt away!

    I will be by to see your deer post;-)

    Gail

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  27. meems,

    I don't believe I have heard you gripe...ever...about anything including armadillos!

    Deer are pretty cute and even though it was in my yard, I did think, how adorable! I just don't want the destruction or the deer ticks!

    Gail

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  28. Cheryl,

    Thank you...BambiII and her mother are beautiful...really gorgeous creatures...especially in someone else's yard!

    Are deer a problem in your part of the world?...They have lost their habitat here and have to search further and further for food!

    Gail

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  29. Cameron,

    Please tell the Doe family that it is a long and winding road through hunters' territory and they would be better served to travel to SC or another state much nearer to them!

    Gail

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  30. Racquel,

    I hope not...maybe closing the gates will help! There is also the reality of my son's big dog barking at them...he will be here for a few weeks...I might have to rent a dog!

    Gail

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  31. Kathleen,

    The little darlings nibbled on the Laura Phlox! Yes, it does seem that this has a protracted feel to it! Yikes.

    I love that you like that photo! I was just outside scattering River Oats seeds around the area...I think a native grass would look great by those chairs!

    Gail

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  32. Kim,

    Wasn't it an absolutely delicious comment! She is very clever...I have urged her to post it ( I left that message on her blog earlier)...it is too good to just be a comment!

    The dear deer are getting to be a problem here in the 'burbs! I am so sorry to hear that you are dealing with them ...fortunately we haven't had the bucks...which I understand are quite destructive. Let me send you all the acorns you need! It has been a banner year for Bur Oaks! I do believe that is what brought the deer to the yard.

    Sigh!

    gail

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  33. JCH,

    Dear Deer Family,

    You are welcome to the waywaybackback...that is my neighbors yard and since he is a big pain in the neighborhood...you can move in there!

    Gail

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  34. Diana,

    I fear mine haven't been citified yet...they don't know the delights of lettuce, tomatoes and malabar spinach. They are very fond of acorns, tender branches on the best ornamental trees and perennials!

    gail

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  35. Lucy,

    I agree...snails and slugs have no charm! Squirrels and deer are adorable...so far!

    gail

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  36. Hi Gail, oh dear oh deer, I wonder who is going to win? / Tyra

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  37. Tyra,

    Well, I plan on winning but then so does the opposition!

    Gail

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  38. Gee, I hope the deer family doesn't come to my garden here in SW Indiana. It would be scary to look out and see a deer peering back at me. Good luck trying to convince them to move on Gail.

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  39. Lisa,

    I have a little extra money in my gardening budget...I was thinking about bus tickets for the Doe Family! Where shall we send them? Ok, not Ohio!

    Gail

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  40. Gail, What a hoot! Speaking of 'a hoot,' I need to tell you about a "toot" and the interloper that was in my mid-backyard last week. It was Wednesday, the day before Thanksgiving, and I was busy cleaning house. Now, YOU know how many trips with leaves I've made to the ravine in the Wayback backyard this Fall... all with the presumption that deer will avoid the spongy mass of sinkhole leaves. Well! I opened a window and hollered at her to leave. What did she do? She looked at me as though it were I that were crazy, and never moved. I decided I needed the help of an absurd-sounding 'toot,' so I found the bike horn (the kind with the squeeze bulb) and 'honked' at her. She took off running.

    Now, answer me this... would you stand guard with a bike horn day and night? Not me!! Any volunteers? ;-)

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  41. Shady, That is great! A little tooting bike horn...Movement activated bike horn...that may make the neighbors mad!

    Isn't it something when they just stare at us like we are the weird ones! Hey, it's my garden and not yours!

    Did you read Dave's suggestion above? I am going to try the barrier on their trail...creatures of habit I am pretty sure they come and go in this one opening in the hedge!

    Have a good day! Btw, the snow looks great...I was trying to post when my kid called home!

    gail

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  42. You gals are funny !!
    Love the post !!

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  43. Patsi,

    Garden bloggers are surely talented and clever!

    Gail

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  44. Darla,

    Glad you liked it! Have a great week!

    Gail

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  45. Gail I drool over people showing photos of deer in their backyards but I can appreciate your concern for damage caused..this post is amusing.

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  46. naturegirl,

    If I lose my sense of humor then the deer win;-)

    I do so understand...they are magnificent creatures and would be welcome in the garden ...except for their plant eating, deer tick dropping ways!

    gail

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  47. Hi Gail,
    Your guest is cute--but that doesn't help, I know:) Being cute doesn't count when it comes to garden destruction! I have my deer issues in the spring and early summer when the phlox are tender and starting to bud. I have many times seen my tall, long blooming plants be cut right down to the ground by these 'cute' visitors! Luckily, they keep growing all summer:) Jan

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  48. Gail, What a beautiful photo! But I know that's not what you want to hear. We occasionally have deer wander into our yard, much to my delight, but they've never done any damage other than possibly break my ceramic birdbath...although they insist it was a flock of vicious birds that did that.
    I do have a solution for you...I mentioned to one of them that hunting season started a week ago, and that my son would be out on the weekends to hunt in our fields. Not one has been seen since.
    Barring that, you might want to hire a good lawyer.

    (Cameron's comment was hilarious!)

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  49. This comment has been removed by the author.

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  50. Of course, my computer (a Dell) crashed midday today. I'm still trying to recover the data. I am borrowing a Mac for the moment to copy off my comment here to post tomorrow. I'll see if I can get to Jane Doe's photo.

    Cameron

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  51. Gail, clever post! And the comments are just as clever! Unfortunately, I am very tired this evening and can't come up with anything witty. But have you tried sprinkling hot sauce on the plants? It works in keeping coons out of the garbage. :}

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  52. You all know such clever deer. I'm impressed. I don't get letters from deer and I looked in the phone book and can't find a single dear lawyer.

    What great advice you have received. I think you should do them all. I am figuring it will take you several years to establish and grow a nice deer proof barrier. Don't forget to include an area of bottomless quicksand.

    Post bicycle horns on several tall post. You can hook them up to a compressor on a timer. Long toots during the day and short toots at night.

    Get your soap at the dollar store and buy the cheapest smelliest kind.

    And last but not least is my suggestion---post offensive signs around your yard about the deer. Say things like....A Deer in the headlights is a good thing. This garden is laced with Exlax. Deer have kooties. Deer burgers are good.

    I see no problem why you should have to write about this next year. Problem solved.

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  53. Okay...Defining Your Home Garden has a new headline

    Herd it in the News: The Deer Went Over the Mountains


    Cameron :-)

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  54. Ah yes, the scourge of the suburbs here. There are plenty of reasons I love city living, but for sure is oen of them. Your garden will survive and thrive in spite of them though!

    Like many others, I endorse the physical barrier theory. It is said to be the best.

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  55. The post was great, Gail, but the comments made it even more fun to read.

    I hope your deer-deterring methods work so that you won't have to go outside the law to put out a contract on the invaders. You're too settled in at Clay & Limestone to use our solution - we moved.

    Annie at the Transplantable Rose

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  56. Cameron,

    I am so glad you posted it! It was too good to hide in the comment's page! So now, let the games begin!

    Gail

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  57. Annie,

    It is fun to write a post that others enjoy, but the icing on this cake is always, always, always the comments!

    I have a very large dog coming to stay for the holidays...maybe she will deter them!

    Have a wonderful week in your garden!

    Gail

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  58. EAL,

    I do have a fence around the back yard but I garden in the front! I will be spraying the plants with something nasty smelling and see how that works!

    Glad you popped over!

    gail

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  59. Jan/Thanksfor2day,

    I did notice a bit of nibbling on the phlox...that will soon be gone anyway but I sure don't want them to get the idea that this is a nice little hangout and a good place to live!

    But you are right...they do continue to grow and bloom once the deer depart!

    Gail

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  60. Rose,

    Cameron's comment was priceless...she has posted it on her blog. I am so glad!

    I will try the hunting threat if all other suggestions fail to deter them! My son's big doggie is coming for a long visit, maybe she can scare them away!

    Keep warm and throw some snowballs at the deer for me.

    Gail

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  61. Beckie,

    It was a long holiday, it's late and you don't have to be clever anymore today! I am glad you came by for a visit. Visits are great and we can just be quiet together!

    Take care~~ gail

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  62. Anna,

    I wrote a perfectly splendid response to your comment an hour ago and it disappeared...It was filled with snappy and clever commentary! I will have to write a better one than this tomorrow!

    Gail

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  63. have you ever read or heard of ancient deer paths? supposedly they are the same paths that have been used for years and changing it is extremely hard. good luck with the letter working, lol!

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  64. LOL sorry I must laugh(-:
    Its more like this...
    Dear Homeowner,
    Please leave a bowl of sliced ripe apples and a bowl of Cheerios by the back fence. A homemade pumpkin pie with whipped cream would also be nice. Thanks,
    Your new best friends,
    The Deer family(-:

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  65. Marmee,

    Something else to think about ancient paths! Yikes.

    I will keep up the letter campaign! It might be more effective;-)

    Gail

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  66. Cindee,

    I used to laugh at the advertisement in Fine Gardening Magazine...It had a bid wearing cartoon deer and the caption read..."Azaleas at the Smiths and then over to the Jones for a little hosta" ..I am taking poetic license with the ad but ....you get the picture! Now it's not so funny, well a little! These comments are keeping me amused!

    Glad you stopped by to add to the merriment!

    Gail

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  67. To whom it may concern:

    This is an official posting of the property known as Fairegarden. There is no trespassing allowed here. Violators will be ...what? I will let Kitty the mighty hunter out. And the retired baseball hurler who can hit the center of the target from one hundred paces, The Financier. And we have a yard full of rocks. You have been forewarned. There will be no stop offs at this rest area on the way to Nashville.

    Frances
    cc: Cameron's Doe family

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  68. TO: Frances
    Fairegarden
    just west of the mountains

    FROM: Ima Hunter

    T. O. W. officers have been put on alert status regarding the whereabouts of members of the infamous Doe Family. Individuals with information concerning this case should take no action themselves, but instead immediately contact the nearest TOW office.

    cc Cameron
    NC Doe Family

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  69. Every time Mr Wonderful sees a deer, you would think it is the first time.
    Donna

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  70. Donna,

    So should I tell Cameron to expect you and Mr Wonderful to pick up the Doe Family that's squatting in her garden!

    Gail

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  71. Oh Gail, I could write a book about my interactions with the Deer Family's relatives in Missouri and Texas! The deer in Missouri were bold and brazen - they came right up on the patio and ate my hostas; peered in the kitchen window as they ate the birdseed in the snow; ate tomato plants and tiger lilies ruthlessly. We lived out in the country so we invited people to bow-hunt on our property, but to no avail. The only thing that ever worked was a big dog and an electric fence.

    Lately with the economic downturn we have made jokes about getting by with the output from a garden and deer meat, the caveat being that in Texas we would have to cut down some of our live oaks to have a space that was sunny enough for a garden, and the Texas deer are awfully runty to make a good meal!

    Hugs to you, and good luck with the deer!

    --Lynn

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  72. Hi Gail,
    What a fun post, and the comments were a hoot too! I have no clever solutions to offer, alas. Just remember though: as they lose their habitat, they have little choice but to intrude on ours, no matter how bothersome they may be to us.

    When I lived in FL, I always used to remark that they should just give the whole state back to the Alligators and quit taking away their homes. But people just thought I was a crazy curmudgeon, lol.

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  73. Gail, I've just remembered reading a post on the blog 'Life Between the Flowers' about keeping deer away from roses.

    The blog owner, Simon, recommends an infra-red-ray device which detects deer as they pass so it can squirt water at them.

    He also recommends CDs on sticks as a short term deterent. (Apparently they get used to them after six months - but that might be a useful idea to keep up your sleeve for a sensitive time in the growing season.)

    This is the link to that post.

    http://lifebetweentheflowers.blogspot.com/2008/10/roses-deer-love-eating-them-deer-damage.html

    Lucy

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  74. Hi Gail,

    I was just taking a leisurely stroll about your blog and landed on this diatribe of deer damage. Cameron - hat off to your outstanding comment!

    You should see this new site Out Out Deer. Every deer repellent for sale in the US is listed in their directory. Completely unbiased product reviews - they don't sell deer repellents. There is one in there somewhere that will let you get rid of the squatters.

    Guilty Gardener

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Let us be grateful to people who make us happy;
they are the charming gardeners
who make our souls blossom.


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