Leaving aside the weather (10 F last night, really?!), I did not need to find that after several years of 100% success in keeping the large hoofed rats out of the yard, I failed majorly last night.  Went out to put Liquid Fence on things (it being the first still day promising to stay at or above freezing and not wet*) and found I was a day late for many of the broad leaved azaleas.  The deer came through this morning, hungry.

I am counting my blessing, an exercise that gets old fast, that they didn’t go after the hollies, the umbrella pine, the oak-leafed hydrangeas, the young pears and hickories, or the rhododendrons (which do Not need help in the dying department).  Still not what I wanted to see at all.  They like the flower buds best of all, of course.  Sometimes I wonder why I garden.

And no, getting my jacket, hands, and face liberally sprayed with Liquid Fence (main ingredients are garlic, rotten eggs, and red pepper) when the Brand New sprayer broke did not help.

*we learned the hard way that broad-leaved evergreens do not care to be sprayed when it is well below freezing.