How to Deter Deer With Irish Spring Soap


Deer can quickly change from being welcome, unexpected backyard guests to voracious pests. Several commercial deer repellent products are available; and recipes for homemade or natural deterrents are plentiful. But, success with these products is unpredictable. Irish Spring is one of these homemade deterrents, and some people experience great success using this strong-smelling soap to deter their unwelcome guests.

Things You'll Need

  • Irish Spring Soap bars
  • Drill
  • Twine, thin rope or other string-like material
  • Sharp knife


  • Drill a small hole near the top of each bar of soap. The hole should be large enough for your rope or string to pass through, and far enough from the top that the rope will stay in throughout rain. Rain will cause a slow reduction in the bar's size.

  • String your rope through the drilled hole and tie it in a knot.

  • Hang the other end of the string from a branch or post near the deer's head and feeding height.


  • Cut the bars of soap into quarters or similar size pieces using a sharp knife.

  • Drill holes in the top and follow instructions for hanging, or drill holes in bottom for stakes.

  • Place the chunks on bamboo or other stakes around your plants. This method works for lower garden plants, while the hanging method works better for trees and taller plants.

  • Refresh your soap often. The stronger the scent of the soap, the better deterrent it is. Cycle the soap and other repellents often.

Tips & Warnings

  • A fence or physical barrier may be your best bet for preventing the deer from eating your plants.
  • It is hard to deter deer once they have found a preferred food-source. They may also become quickly adapted to the soap, and reports have come in about deer eating the soap.

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  • Photo Credit Adam Jones/Photodisc/Getty Images
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