The Q&A Archives: Lantanas ... Virburnum Tinus... Euonymus got eaten!

Question: I bought some trailing lantanas recently (lavenda, white, and some yellow), they seem to be growing fine and are blooming nicely. However, there are other lantana hybrids (with multi cream and light yellow flowers; radiation lantana; and irene lantana) that were planted and within a few days, all the blooms and leaves were eaten. We have squirrels in our yard. Do squirrels like these types of lantanas? I thought lantanas are poisonous.

Would you have a list of plants that are squirrels resistant? We also have some plants (virburnum tinus spring bouquet and gold edge euonymus) which I thought were deer resistant and they were also eaten after growing nicely for over a year. Quite puzzled!

Answer: I think what you've experienced is quite normal - animals are unpredictable. What they've not bothered for years may suddenly become quite attractive to them. These changes in preference may be due to competition from a large deer or squirrel population, or it could be a one-time occurance because a group is migrating from one site to another. There are no reliable lists of deer or squirrel resistant plants. Hungry animals will eat almost anything. Curious animals might try tasting new plantings but may not return to them again. It's anyone's guess why some of your lantanas were eaten and others were not. The only way to positively eliminate damage to your plants is to fence your garden. Best wishes with your landscape!

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