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Garden with a Winner!™

Most of us find out the hard way that hungry deer will eat almost any vegetation within their reach. However, you can make your garden a little less inviting by including plants they dislike and avoiding those they prefer.

In general, deer avoid plants with a sticky, rough or fuzzy texture and plants with spiny protection. Not surprisingly, deer stay away from poisonous plants:) There  are some common varieties that have toxicity that deer avoid.

Deer also turn their noses up at fragrant plants with strong, ‘stinky’ scents.  Deer use their sense of smell to detect predators so strongly-scented plants may confuse a deer’s sense of smell, which makes them uneasy.

Keeping Deer Away

  • Plants not browsed for years can become edible if deer are desperate to eat and may become a regular in their diet (fawns will nearly eat anything)
  • Gardeners can plant a perimeter garden for deer to eat so the rest of their gardens are left alone
  • Deer will often rub the felt off their antlers on tender tree trunks; potential for damage is high. To protect trees, wrap trunks loosely with chicken wire up to several feet off the ground (beyond height deer can reach)
  • There are a number of commercial products used as deer repellent or homemade deer repellent is an option as well (homemade recipe)
  • Mature plants are not as appealing, deer generally eat new growth or nibble at flower buds
  • A fence

 

Look for this icon on your plant tag!

Look for this icon on your plant tag.