Return to the New Jersey Gardening Forum | Post a Follow-Up

Deer resistant perennials

Posted by grijo z6 NJ (My Page) on
Sun, Jul 10, 05 at 19:29

Moved into a new, to me, house a couple of months ago, and decided to take on gardening. So far the deer are getting the best of me. Last week I planted a) Little Business Daylily, b)Snow Lady Shasta Daisy, c) Purple Emperor Sedum, and d) Aureo-margaritana Hosta. Two days later they were gone.

Looking for recommendations on flowering perennials to plan around the house, next to the mailbox, and on outdoor planters.

Follow-Up Postings:

RE: Deer resistant perennials

at my house these plants are safe

Coneflower (some nibbling, not bad)
columbines (not where I live now, occasionally at former house)
bleeding hearts
ornamental grasses
butterfly bushes
salvias, agastaches, monardas, lambs ear, lamium - anything in the mint family
things with scented or hairy leaves, generally speaking
deadly poisons, foxglove, monkshood, and hellebore
Joe pye weed
lily of the valley
Virginia bluebells
alchemilla, lady's mantle

sprays like Deer-off work well, but I do try to keep vulnerable plants near the house.

there are lots of deer resistant lists you can look up or get from the library.

RE: Deer resistant perennials

I'll stop by the library tomorrow. Thanks for list.

Having undeveloped land behind my house is nice. So far this year I've seen a couple of foxes and a pheasant in my backyard. But the deer come next to the house and eat everything.

RE: Deer resistant perennials

Try looking here. It looks like the best source I have seen in a while!


Here is a link that might be useful: Rutgers Deer Resistance Study

RE: Deer resistant perennials

Birdgardner's list is a great one - however, I've found that the deer will eat Joe Pye to the ground as well as lobelia, poppies, coneflower and columbine!

All that said, this year they have left all those alone, for the most part, but really did in the viburnums and some of the ferns.

The Rutgers list is a good one also but if you're a purist, there are several plants on that list considered invasive - and additional ones "my" deer have savored, including jack in the pulpit.

I'm surrounding many of my perennials with grasses - so far it seems to be working.

RE: Deer resistant perennials

It all depends on how hungry they are! There have been winters where they eat all of my ivy and there have been winters where they eat none..
They just tromp across my lawn like its a buffet! The liquid fence stuff works but its pricy. My current alternative was to move all our perennials to the fenced in back yard. The front beds are bare mulched till I get the time to pick up non deer friendly stuff...

RE: Deer resistant perennials

You need to check with your neighbors too! Deer appetites vary greatly from one area to the next, and on how many there are!

Unlike at birdgardner's current house, my deer eat: peonies, columbines, hellebores, yuccas, ferns, cranberry bush (Viburnum trilobum) and English/Boston ivy.

They'll nibble at Aruncus (goatsbeard), sample astilbe (I'm waiting for another round of browsing), coneflower (Echinacea), and have taste tested young poppies.

They do seem to ignore foxgloves(Digitalis), most of the sages, thistle (Echinops), myrtle (Vinca minor), and Virginia bluebells.

I do get some additional (collateral damage?) from groundhogs(woodchucks) which seem to savor Liatris, gaillardia, echinacea, and cyclamens (although I may be mistaken about the vandal involved).

Fencing helps, but isn't always feasible/practicable/possible. Deer can jump over an 8' fence, g'hogs can tunnel under it (or climb over a 5' fence) if they are hungry enough.

RE: Deer resistant perennials

Grijo, the other posters are right about how much deer appetites vary! We had one neighbor whose daffodils would get eaten, and all the other daffodils in the neighborhood would be left alone. And my pachysandra gets eaten (newly established) and the neighbors have huge untouched sweeps.

They do seem to go for new plantings, and isolated plants, or plants on the edge - plants in a large bed are more likely to be left alone, especially when mixed with unappetizing companions. You can cover new plants with pieces of deer net - raise it up as the plant grows so the plant doesn't grow through and get stuck.

Another never-touched: Japanese anemone. In my yard, anyway. And caryopteris and spirea.

RE: Deer resistant perennials

An analogy that helps to understand what's going on is this: Do humans eat liver? A very small number of them love it. Most hate it. But all will eat it rather than starve.

They won't touch my lambsear. It's doing beautifuly. If you're in the princeton area I could give you some plants.
You can e-mail me freedee56@aolcom

 o Post a Follow-Up

Please Note: Only registered members are able to post messages to this forum.

    If you are a member, please log in.

    If you aren't yet a member, join now!

Return to the New Jersey Gardening Forum

Information about Posting

  • You must be logged in to post a message. Once you are logged in, a posting window will appear at the bottom of the messages. If you are not a member, please register for an account.
  • Please review our Rules of Play before posting.
  • Posting is a two-step process. Once you have composed your message, you will be taken to the preview page. You will then have a chance to review your post, make changes and upload photos.
  • After posting your message, you may need to refresh the forum page in order to see it.
  • Before posting copyrighted material, please read about Copyright and Fair Use.
  • We have a strict no-advertising policy!
  • If you would like to practice posting or uploading photos, please visit our Test forum.
  • If you need assistance, please Contact Us and we will be happy to help.

Learn more about in-text links on this page here