In the spring when there is lots of food for them in the woods, deer will stay away from Rugosas and any others that have a lot of thorns and prickles. However if they are hungry then no new rose growth is safe. Many ideas have been tried to discourage them from eating roses but once they get used to it then they will sinply continue to eat the new growth. Placing a 5 foot cage of chicken wire around the new rose gives the plant a chance to make a mature bush that can withstand deer pruning the next year without being killed.
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