You can, and many have. But most of us don't have the time or patience (or workshop) to experiment with all the various dimensions and features that make a cage work properly. The Deer Cage does all this for you, so that you can concentrate on what you really love.
At the Deer Cage Company, we've done extensive field testing to be sure that 4 feet works. What we've found is that while larger bucks can graze at heights up to 5 feet, the Deer Cage's wide diameter allows very little, if any damage above 4 feet.
However, if you would like a little extra protection, our Deer Cage Max is 5' tall and has a maximum diameter of 3.5'.
The Deer Cage is designed to resist deer in two ways. First, the long, skewered stakes inserted at a slight inward angle anchor the Deer Cage securely. Second, the cage itself is just the right gauge and diameter so that it "gives" with pressure. This keeps it from deformingandfrom providing the resistance that would allow a deer to upend it.
The Deer Clip allows you to reduce the diameter of your Deer Cage. This is especially useful for making tomato cages and for fitting it to container gardens. Conversely, you can create a large enclosure (for berry patches, for instance) by linking two or more Deer Cages together. It's easy, but it does require two or more vertical stakes to keep it from getting floppy.
The Deer Clip is specially designed to allow you to clip the Deer Cage securely together in seconds. Then, if and when you need to open it (to move it to another tree or shrub, or to mow, or to fertilize, for instance), you can open it again just as easily. The Deer Clip stays on the Cage--no loose parts! This is one of the great advantages of the Deer Cage over do-it-yourself cages, which are generally fixed in place once installed. Plus, it's UV-resistant and weather-tested.
Two or more Deer Cages can be easily linked with their Deer Clips to form an enclosure that effectively protects berry patches, sapling nurseries, or vulnerable perennial beds. At that diameter, stakes are needed to support the enclosure.
It depends. Most trees and some shrubs will mature to the point where they no longer need Deer Cage protection, at which point you can remove the Cage and put it elsewhere in your yard. Some shrubs, as well as your container gardens and berry patches, will need permanent protection as long as deer are in your area.
Yes. During the growing season, deer will eat your new growth. In the late autumn, bucks will rub their antlers against trunks. In the winter, deer will be desperate for food and will graze aggressively on plant matter that they would ignore during the growing season.