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Primer: Plants That Deer Don't Like

Primer: Plants That Deer Don't Like


I recently showed you some tricks for repelling deer from your garden without pulling out your rifle. But probably the simplest way to keep Bambi away from your beloved plants is to choose plants that he doesn't find palatable. To begin, you should certainly avoid planting hostas, lilies, tulips, hollyhocks, impatiens, sunflowers, crocus, daylilies, lobelia, phlox, rose, and yews, which are deer faves. Here is a list of plants that should be safe from being Bambi's breakfast, lunch, or dinner:

  • Ornamental grasses. Try astillbe, baptista, bleeding heart, catmint, bloody cranesbill, dusty miller, evening primrose, ferns, foam flower, foxglove, iris, lavender, monarda, nasturtium, peony, salvia, santolina, and yarrow.
  • Strongly scented herbs and plants. Try sage, lemon balm, monarda (bee balm), chives, chili pepper, garlic, mints, rosemary, thyme, wintergreen, and Russian sage.
  • Prickly, thorned plants (except roses). Try cleome, holly, boxwood, butterfly bush, Colorado blue spruce, cotoneaster, honeysuckle, Japanese maple, magnolia, Russian olive, viburnum, barberry, and purple coneflower.

Check out Northern Gardening and UGA for more plants that deer tend to avoid.
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