Deer are one of the most visible of garden pests (in part because they are also one of the largest). When a browsing deer has been through the damage is almost always immediately evident. Short of fencing, not much works to keep them out. Therefore, landscapes that have learned to resist deer browsing tend to remain beautiful just a little bit longer. Adding plants that will either survive browsing or be avoided altogether is a great place to start. Here are a few we have found that meet this criteria:
Height: 15-20" | Width: 10-15" | Light: Full - Part Sun | Zones: 4-8
Commonly called "Ornamental Onion," Allium have an onion like taste which makes them undesirable to browsing deer.Learn More
Height: 24-36" | Width: 38-42" | Light: Full - Part Sun | Zones: 4-9
Milky white sap in the stems and coarse leaves see A. tabernaemontana cultivars usually ignored.Learn More
Height: 24-32" | Width: 40-48" | Light: Full Sun - Full Shade | Zones: 3-7
Also called "Goatsbeard", Aruncus have finely textured foliage and wispy sprays of flowers similar to Astilbe.Learn More
Height: 14-16" | Width: 28-32" | Light: Part - Full Shade | Zones: 3-8
One of the few deer resistant shade plants, Brunnera have a unique leaf texture that is often left alone by browsing animals.Learn More
Height: 6-8" | Width: 12-14" | Light: Full - Part Sun | Zones: 4-9
Thin, needle-like foliage is semi-evergreen. An excellent plant for late spring color.
Variety Pictured: Dianthus 'Paint the Town Magenta'Learn More
Height: 8-12" | Width: 16-32" | Light: Part Sun - Full Shade | Zones: 4-9
Both DOLCE® and PRIMO® Heuchera series have excellent deer resistance. Heuchera are another semi-evergreen plant and good option for brightening up the shade.
Variety Pictured: Heuchera PRIMO® 'Black Pearl'Learn More
Height: 4-4½' | Width: 4-5' | Light: Full - Part Sun | Zones: 4-9
Growing at about 1" a day, Hibiscus simply grow too fast to be slowed down by any but the most voracious of browsing animals.
Variety Pictured: Hibiscus SUMMERIFIC® 'Holy Grail'Learn More
Height: 2½-3½' | Width: 2-2½' | Light: Full Sun | Zones: 5b-9
Grass like foliage adds a varied texture to most broadleaf perennials, perfect for adding contrast in the landscape.
Variety Pictured: Kniphofia PYROMANIA™ 'Backdraft'Learn More
Height: 12-18" | Width: 12-18" | Light: Full Sun | Zones: 5-9
Fragrant, needle-like foliage is rarely bothered by deer. Sweet Romance® is one of the best Lavenders for rebloom.Learn More
Height: 12-14" | Width: 18-20" | Light: Full Sun | Zones: 3-8
A member of the mint family, Nepeta are another of the plants that are low on deer's list of desires. Even if they are bothered, new growth will soon emerge from the crown to fill any damaged spaces.Learn More
Height: 28-32" | Width: 34-38" | Light: Full Sun | Zones: 4-9
Woody stems and fragrant, finely-textured foliage are rarely bothered by deer or other browsing animals.Learn More
Height: 16-22" | Width: 16-24" | Light: Full Sun | Zones: 3-8
Unlike annual Salvia, the much more coarsely textured perennial species are not bothered by deer. New growth will replace any damage done by browsing animals.
Variety Pictured: Salvia nemorosa 'Pink Profusion'Learn More