Zinnias vs deer

bobofpghFebruary 26, 2010

Do deer like zinnias?

Bob

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oilpainter(3)

Yep. Deer will eat almost anything. My sisters garden and flowers were desimated by them last year.

    Bookmark   February 26, 2010 at 5:39PM
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zen_man

Bob,

"Do deer like zinnias? "

I have grown a lot of zinnias around deer over a period of quite a few years, and I have never had any trouble with deer eating them. Sometimes a herd of deer would run through my zinnia patch and physically knock down a few, but they weren't eating them.

Several books list zinnias as suitable for deer proofing your garden.

Deerproofing Your Yard & Garden by Rhonda Massingham Hart, Deer-Resistant Landscaping by Neil Soderstrom, and Bugs, Slugs, & Other Thugs: Controlling Garden Pests Organically , to name a few. I picked those books because Amazon will let you use their Click to Look Inside feature to verify that those books list zinnias among plants that deer won't eat. There are many books on the subject of deer in your garden.

ZM
(not associated with any product or vendor mentioned)

    Bookmark   February 27, 2010 at 1:31AM
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dyhgarden(7b)

I tested Benary's Giant in my deer-occupied garden last summer. They tasted ONE bloom. My zinnias bloomed into autumn when the food supply gets scarce and they still didn't eat the zinnias.

I just ordered a lot more seeds for this summer.

My "thing" is deer resistant gardening. I am conducting trials of perennials for a national nursery/breeder and some annual seeds this summer for a national seed retailer.

I write about my deer experience on my garden blog (and I'm a freelance garden and travel writer). On my left side bar there is a page of plants that I have found to be deer resistant in my garden (and a rabbit resistant list, too).

That said - if food is scarce and deer are starving, they'll try anything. If you were lost in the woods without a grocery store, you'd probably try unusual things, too.

Cameron

Here is a link that might be useful: my garden blog

    Bookmark   February 27, 2010 at 9:22PM
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newbie_in_nj(6b E/Central NJ)

NJ deer decimate Zinnia including Benary Giants. Eaten and torn apart.

Cameron has a fully deer resistant design to her property and its plantings which is magnificent. I think the total layout promotes deer resistance where most of us have browsing or worse without the strategies she uses.

It's been my experience the "resistant" lists seem pretty useless without some strategic arrangements in the gardening.

Knowing the size of the deer herd(s) in your area is important. My "deer resistant" flower plantings were the only ones in a few mile radius in the midst of 20+ deer. Obviously made my plants a target.

In the past I've lived vicariously through your blog and what you accomplished, Cameron! :)

Hope you can enjoy the Zinnia, Bob.

    Bookmark   March 3, 2010 at 9:35PM
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dyhgarden(7b)

I guess NJ deer like zinnias. Probably less food available in the wild.

We have a herd of 20+ (counted when all come "home" to sleep) whitetail, but we do live in the country, not town, so there is more food for them.

Each year, the fawns are born within sight from my kitchen window. I've watched the birth of one!

Over the last few years, we've come to recognize the deer! The does leave the fawns during the day. The little things come out to see us and we have to chase them back into the woods. Because they "know" us and our greyhound, they don't run from us at all.

The deer sleep within inches (literally) of my garden and walk through it every night of the year. I do grow a lot of agastache, nepeta, salvia, lavender and buddleia.

A year ago, they ate a yucca! This year, they didn't. Food supply must be better this year. The yucca recovered.

I am going to plant hundreds of zinnias out in the deer garden this year. Last year, I tried about 20 zinnias, but planted a few along the edges where only one was sampled.

Glad you enjoy the blog.

    Bookmark   March 4, 2010 at 9:24AM
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