The Q&A Archives: Spring Flowering Ornamental Trees that are Deer Resistant

Question: Are there any pretty small to medium sized flowering ornamental trees (like Dogwood, Redbud, Kwanzan Cherry etc.)that the deer will not damage? I live in the Cleveland, Ohio area!

Answer: Both dogwood and redbud are native to North America and therefore considered not particularly appealing to deer. However, a hungry deer will eat almost anything and the larger the deer population, the more competition there is for food. So, although these trees are not usually bothered by deer, it is possible they'll nibble on them. You could try some of the commercial repellents which smell/taste bad to deer, or try a homemade one based on garlic and/or pepper. Some gardeners report success using soap (Irish Spring bars) hung from trees. You could also try caging off the plants with wire mesh. In my own sad experience, the only really reliable long term solution is a very tall fence.

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