Deer are beautiful animals. But as anyone who’s had a garden ruined by deer can tell you, they can be very destructive. Below are 7 types of plants that can naturally repel deer and help protect your garden.

Plants with Fuzzy Leaves – Plants that have fuzzy, hairy, or wooly foliage are likely to be safe from deer. Rub the leaves with your fingers – do you feel bristly or soft hairs? There’s a good chance deer won’t eat them.

Plants with Strong Aromas – Foliage and flowers with strong aromas will confuse deer’s smell, and this can discourage the deer from eating. Herbs such as lavender, mint, rosemary and Russian sage are good places to start, as well as garlic, onion, boxwood and peonies.

Plants with Bitter Taste – Deer often avoid ferns and yarrow, along with flowers like snowdrops, daffodils and poppies.

Plants with Thick Foliage  – Deer generally avoid plants with leathery, thick, or fibrous leaves unless they’re starving. Some good ones to choose from are irises, peonies, lavender, and pachysandra.

Plants with Spines/Thorns – Deer don’t care for unusual textures, particularly sharp spines or thorns on their foliage or stems. Some good choices are barberry, acanthus and globe thistle in the flower or vegetable garden.

Plants with Sharp Edges – Usually a deer will stay clear of sedges and grasses, since their sharp edges cause irritation. They’re also hard to digest. Using ornamental grass inside your garden and lawn or bordering your flower or vegetable beds.

Plants with a Greyish Color – Deer don’t like silvery or grey foliage. Things like dusty miller, Lamb’s ears, Lungwort and Russian Sage are great choices.

If you have a problem wtih deer and you are looking for ways to naturally repel them, these are some good plants to start with. They’re not a guarantee, but they can be a big help.

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