Bay Laurel Garden Center - Deer Resistant Plants



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We use a list of deer resistant plants compiled by Berkely Horticultural Nursery and it is quite thorough- but a word of warning - there are no guarantees! These recommendations have been tested by many local gardeners, but the palates of deer are known to vary. One precaution worth taking; spray plants right after they arrive from the nursery. Our customers have had great success with "Liquid Fence." After the plants have been hardened of f in the ground, they seem to be less appealing.

Two of the most familiar and popular genus of plants you should consider are Lavender and Rosemary.

Lavandula stoechys

Lavender varieties are many: Lavandula stoechys (Spanish lavender) with varieties including Otto Quasti, Kew Red and Avondale. Lavandula angustifolia (English lavender) and the many hybrids such as Provence, Munstead, Hidcote and Grosso. Dutch lavender is another, a type that is extremely vigorous with profuse lavender flowers.


Rosemary 'Irene'




























Rosemary has flowers in the blue shades, although "Majorca Pink" is an exception. The flowers are a very pink lavender and the plant itself turns and swirls to heights of 4 feet and grows far wider in width. "Blue Boy" is very diminutive, only growing to 1 ft. by 2 ft. "Tuscan Blue" is a good choice for the landscape; flowers are dark blue and the plant will reach 5 ft. New introductions appear almost every season. "Boule" (French for bowl) is well behaved at 3' x 3' and 'Irene' is similar in size but sporting very bright blue flowers.Culinary varieties include "Savor"and "Barbecue." Rosemary "Huntington Carpet" is a great ground cover. Another very favorable attribute is the drought tolerance of all the rosemarys - they can get by on practially no water. They do look their best, however, with some very moderate drip irrigation.

Other pungent herbs that seem to be unappetizing to the deer population include Salvia (various types of sage) Nepeta (Cat Mint) and Oregano species.

Oregano 'Hopley's Purple'

For the shade, ferns are good bets, also Helleborous, Choisya ternata, Hosta, Liriope, Sarcoccoca, Taxus and Trachelospermum (Star jasmine). Shade loving grasses which do not attract deer are many of the carex species.

Although the deer are mad about roses and can easily munch on Pyracantha, the thorny group of Berberis are not generally on their menu. Berberis 'Royal Cloak' is very dark purple red and grows to 8 ft. or more. Berberis 'Rosy Glow' has shades of rose intermingled with the darker purples and only reaches 4 ft. or so.'Crimson Pygmy grows 2 - 4 ft.Berberis darwinii has all green leaves; all these varieties sport yellow flowers, some not very showy; darwinii has golden yellow flowers and they are quite striking.

Berberis 'Rosy Glow'

A great way to add some blue to your garden
- Ceratostigma griffithii. This decidious shrub has dark wiry stems and brilliant blue flowers for most all of the summer. Easy to prune, tough, needing little water once established. Its cousin, Ceratostigma plumbaginoides is a very low growing ground cover with the same bright blue flowers - the plant completely disappears in the winter so try to remember where you plant it!

Zauschneria (California fuchsia)

Many Native California plants are deer resistant. Among them are the Manzanitas, Salvias, Oregon grape (Mahonia aquifolium), Zauschneria (California fuchsia), Romneya (Matilija poppy), Myrica and Prunus ilicifolia and Prunus lyonii.



Stop by the nursery and we'll be happy to assist you with your deer resistant garden!


Bay Laurel Garden Center • 2500 El Camino Real • Atascadero, CA•