Let’s face it, Deer will eat just about any plant if they are hungry enough. They can also be a problem for the gardener, as if they don’t eat it, they will trample on it. However some plants are more resistant to Deer than others. Mostly its because they do not like the taste.
Some flowering shrubs and small trees are more likely to survive than other. A few bulbs Deer will not eat, so you can have a garden, its just a little more difficult.
However a hungry Deer will eat just about anything, so Deer Proof, we can’t list, Deer resistant, well some they avoid, until last.
An interesting article titled Deer In The Urban Landscape, goes deeper into the problem and offers a more complete list.
Deer Repellent Plants.
Now these are the ones that might make deer actually go away, you are looking at strong smelling plants for this, maybe garlic and onions, however although deer might not like the smell of garlic and onions, when they are in the ground they do not actually smell as strong as when they are processed. Worth a try, but no guarantees……
In our experience no plants are ‘Deer Proof’ however many are ‘Deer Resistant’ or at least they are not as palatable as others, or perhaps they give of an aroma that is not quite to the Deers taste. However a hungry Deer is not that fussy…
It also needs to be remembered that Deer do not only eat plants, they rub against them and stand on them.
Deer tend to resist plants that are highly aromatic such as some of the Salvias and Lemon Balm. Deer also prefer to avoid plants with prickles (however they seem to love roses)
Deer Resistant Plants
List of Deer Resistant Shrubs and Small Trees
- Colletia paradoxa
- Cotoneaster glaucophylla
- Yucca (especially the prickly ones)
Deer Resistant Ground Covers
- Prostrate Rosemary
- Deer Resistant Perennials
- Angel Trumpet
- Bearded Iris
- Rosemary (Rosmarinus officinalis)
- Prickly Pear
- Deer Resistant Ornamental grasses
- Miscanthus sinensis
- Pampas Grass
- Purple Fountain