Deer have eaten off new strawberry plants
Last spring I planted strawberries for the first time. I did not harvest any because I read that they would produce more fruit this year if I didn't. Now the deer have eaten all the leaves off the plants; most to ground level. Will the plants grow new leaves? Is there anything I can do to help insure success? I have since covered the strawberry bed with chicken wire.
Prince George's County Maryland
There is a good chance that the strawberry plants will grow new leaves. Deer do not usually pull up the crown and roots. The earlier in the season that the deer ate the leaves, the weaker the plants will have become. If the deer ate the leaves in December, it will not be too much of a problem, since strawberries replace old leaves anyway. Generally people cover their plants over winter with straw to protect the plants. Covering the strawberry plants and the straw with chicken wire is an excellent deer deterrent. http://extension.psu.edu/plants/gardening/fphg/strawberries