Wednesday, September 3, 2014

More on Deer-Resistant Plants

We have tremendous deer pressure here and our plants are constantly under fire. Although, forsythia and peony are considered "deer resistant", this summer, the deer have eaten both to the point of killing the plants.

In Ruth Rogers Clausen's excellent book, "50 Beautiful Deer-Resistant Plants",  a helpful rating scale is provided for each plant. The scale is just 7-10 with plants under 7 not even included in the book, as those plants are regularly browsed by deer.  So, 7 is described as "deer sometimes nip off flowers but leave foliage alone", 8 is "deer occasionally nip off one or two flowers but mostly ignore plant", 9 - just browse new spring foliage and 10 - rarely browse and usually avoid plant altogether. Bloom times, and growing and design tips are also included.

So, I was curious if my 2 plants were listed in the book.  Forsythia is not even included in the book! The Peony is included in the list of 50 but with a rating of 7-10.


For the most part, I find most of her choices and rating scales spot on, for example the Lenten Rose and Fringed Bleeding Heart have a rating of 9-10, which I completely agree with.

Some plants I didn't realize were deer resistant and I look forward to planting outside the fence include, Blue False Indigo, Yarrow, Castor Oil Plant and Hybrid Sage.


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