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"Deer-Resistant" May Not Really Be

By careyana
October 1, 2011

Deer will eat just about anything when they are hungry enough! Don't go by the 'deer resistant' tag at all.

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Name: Sandi
Austin, Tx (Zone 8b)
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Bubbles
Sep 30, 2011 6:17 PM CST
It hasn't been scientifically proven, but I've observed that those dang deer in my yard just don't read those "deer resistant" tags!
Name: Lynn
Dallas, OR (Zone 8b)
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valleylynn
Sep 30, 2011 6:26 PM CST
We don't have very much trouble with the deer here since our winters are fairly mild and there is a lot of forage for them. Sometimes they will nip the tops out of our young tomato plants.
Name: Allison
NJ (Zone 6a)
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Onewish1
Sep 30, 2011 7:57 PM CST
oohhhh boy I forgot to spray and they ate all my hostas, hydrangeas, and azaleas in the back of my yard Grumbling I was sooo good all summer too.. until now
Name: Margaret
Near Kamloops, BC, Canada (Zone 3a)
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mcash70
Sep 30, 2011 8:33 PM CST
Oh no!! that was not nice of the deer to do that Allison!! Thumbs down The photo was taken this spring of a doe boldly looking over my fence directly at me after she been chased out of my neighbors yard where she had been browsing, I think she wanted to see If I had something good for dessert! Hilarious!
Name: Allison
NJ (Zone 6a)
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Onewish1
Sep 30, 2011 9:49 PM CST
hope this early damage does not mean another bad winter.. never see it this time of year
Name: Linda
Medina Co., TX (Zone 8a)
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LindaTX8
Sep 30, 2011 11:00 PM CST
They love penstemons and blooming yuccas...and lots of other flowering plants. Of course, during this drought, I'm feeding and watering deer outside our fence. They were absolutely starving.
I would feel more optimistic about a bright future for man if he spent less time proving that he can outwit Nature and more time tasting her sweetness and respecting her seniority. E. B.White
Integrity can never be taken. It can only be given, and I wasn't going to give it up to these people. Gary Mowad
Name: Jo Ann Gentle
Pittsford NY (Zone 6a)
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ge1836
Oct 1, 2011 2:06 AM CST
We had a bad winter last year. They dug thru the snow and ate Heuchera Caramel.It didnt return. They also ate hydrangea back to 6 inches.It didnt bloom and stayed smaller but I liked it anyway.
Name: Allison
NJ (Zone 6a)
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Onewish1
Oct 1, 2011 5:50 AM CST
that hydrangea was a rooted cutting from Pirl and just started looking nice... and they plowed down my pinky winky.. the one azalea is 4 years old.. and I didn't see it bloom once yet.. they usually get it during the dead of winter though.. not this early
Name: Carey
Austin, TX (Zone 8b)
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careyana
Oct 1, 2011 1:21 PM CST
A few deer haven't made it already. One died right by my neighbors front door the other day. I'm feeding them stale chips, bread, and any veggies/fruits that are starting to go bad. I also have a bucket of water for them. The only problem is they're also competing with the tree rats and birds and sometimes they don't make it on time.

I guess they figured out that my plumi wasn't nearly as tasty as my begonia and are now avoiding my front porch entirely.
Name: Linda
Medina Co., TX (Zone 8a)
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LindaTX8
Oct 1, 2011 2:44 PM CST
It really breaks my heart...some just won't make it! Water helps, deer feed or anything edible for them helps, but it's so sad. I know, anything I put out will be gobbled up, not always by the species I want to help. The hogs, for instance...more people here are talking about trying to kill them because if someone is walking around in the wrong place at the wrong time now...they're likely to hear those awful noises nearby...it's very scary, believe me, I've heard them. One man in Bandera Co. somewhere was attacked on his property...he said he regretted being unarmed...was barely able to get home with the bad injuries he had.
I would feel more optimistic about a bright future for man if he spent less time proving that he can outwit Nature and more time tasting her sweetness and respecting her seniority. E. B.White
Integrity can never be taken. It can only be given, and I wasn't going to give it up to these people. Gary Mowad
[Last edited by LindaTX8 - May 7, 2013 12:35 AM (+)]
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Name: Sandi
Austin, Tx (Zone 8b)
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Bubbles
Oct 1, 2011 4:43 PM CST
The plumeria has a milky latex in the leaves and stems. One taste and they'll stop eating it for sure. At the lake, I've put out BBQ, mashed potatoes, salad stuff, baked beans...you name it...the deer will eat it. They are literally skin and bones out there. no one's feeding them because of the hefty fines. I'm not feeding them, I'm just "drying some fruit and greens" before I take them home.

Here, the neighborhood deer seem "well-fed." They seem to gravitate to the new neighbors' yards too. You know , the ones who plant hydrangeas, impatiens and roses in the front beds.
Name: Linda
Medina Co., TX (Zone 8a)
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LindaTX8
Oct 1, 2011 5:45 PM CST
Of course! That's why they're well-fed! The deer in this area would think they were in heaven if they had access to plants like those! Most people out here don't have a garden. Besides, people around here sometimes shoot at them...strictly illegal, but it happens. So, they're kind of afraid of people.
I would feel more optimistic about a bright future for man if he spent less time proving that he can outwit Nature and more time tasting her sweetness and respecting her seniority. E. B.White
Integrity can never be taken. It can only be given, and I wasn't going to give it up to these people. Gary Mowad
Name: Ann ~Heat zn 9, Sunset
North Fl. (Zone 8b)
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flaflwrgrl
Oct 1, 2011 6:02 PM CST
Crying
I am a strong believer in the simple fact is that what matters in this life is how we treat others. I think that's what living is all about. Not what I've done in my life but how I've treated others.
~~ Sharon Brown ~~



Name: Sandi
Austin, Tx (Zone 8b)
Texas Gardening
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Bubbles
Oct 1, 2011 7:25 PM CST
The ones at the lake are sooo hungry and weak. I can walk out on the deck and they just stare at me. I go back inside, find something, anything in the freezer, and toss it out the door. They sniff it, then begin to eat. DH reminds me I'm "gonna get in trouble"....but they are pitiful right now. And we're right on the water, but I've never seen them venture down to drink from the lake? We even have steps going into the water (for the old Cocker Spaniel that couldn't jump in anymore). I remember reading that people think they're doing a good thing by giving them corn, but the deer that eat a lot of feed corn wind up having multiple births...like triplets. Not sure if that's a tale dreamed up by some person who doesn't want their landscape eaten, tho. With some of the stuff I've fed 'em, they will be spouting..."Ola!" by Christmas!
Name: Linda
Medina Co., TX (Zone 8a)
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LindaTX8
Oct 1, 2011 10:39 PM CST
I'm just afraid that one fawn here will end up thinking that deer are only supposed to eat what is left in a bowl on one side of my property. Hopefully its mom is telling it they would normally eat the yummy plants which would be green and edible around here most years.
I would feel more optimistic about a bright future for man if he spent less time proving that he can outwit Nature and more time tasting her sweetness and respecting her seniority. E. B.White
Integrity can never be taken. It can only be given, and I wasn't going to give it up to these people. Gary Mowad
Name: Sandi
Austin, Tx (Zone 8b)
Texas Gardening
Forum moderator Charter ATP Member I was one of the first 300 contributors to the plant database! Garden Ideas: Master Level Plant Identifier Master Gardener: Texas
Region: Texas Tropicals Plumerias Ferns Greenhouse Garden Art
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Bubbles
Oct 2, 2011 9:18 AM CST
Moms know best!
Name: Linda
Medina Co., TX (Zone 8a)
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LindaTX8
Oct 2, 2011 10:06 AM CST
I really wonder what's been eating the mistletoe this year. I wouldn't think that's normally an edible thing. And yet, something's been eating on it.
I would feel more optimistic about a bright future for man if he spent less time proving that he can outwit Nature and more time tasting her sweetness and respecting her seniority. E. B.White
Integrity can never be taken. It can only be given, and I wasn't going to give it up to these people. Gary Mowad
Surprisingly GREEN Pittsburgh (Zone 6a)
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crittergarden
Oct 19, 2011 12:16 PM CST
I've lived with deer for years in zone 9 - had no garden at all because I couldn't afford to fence the yard. When I moved to zone 5,
I really didn't expect them to eat my yucca and arborvite, but I guess it was a hungry Winter.
SHOW ME YOUR CRITTERS! I have a critter page over at Cubits. http://cubits.org/crittergarden/thread/view/73275/
Name: Linda
Medina Co., TX (Zone 8a)
Charter ATP Member Salvias Herbs Bluebonnets Native Plants and Wildflowers Lover of wildlife (Raccoon badge)
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LindaTX8
Oct 19, 2011 1:06 PM CST
When yuccas bloom, the blooms as well as the stem is like deer candy for them! When they get really hungry, they'll go after the lower parts of the plant. I made the mistake of planting a red yucca outside my fenced yard once and they enjoy it like they do the other yuccas out there. When the Texas Milkweed bloom out there, they eat the flowering part of it.
I would feel more optimistic about a bright future for man if he spent less time proving that he can outwit Nature and more time tasting her sweetness and respecting her seniority. E. B.White
Integrity can never be taken. It can only be given, and I wasn't going to give it up to these people. Gary Mowad
Name: Kim
Iowa (Zone 5a)
I kill ornamentals... on purpose.
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Chillybean
Sep 8, 2015 12:51 PM CST
We're starting to see deer more often here. So far, they've not touched the Yucca, it's up against the house, though. We planted some Yucca glauca by the driveway and this may be more attractive to them. Sad I guess I could plant more mountain mint or Monarda nearby.

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