Month: June 2014

California Natives

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.


There are many types of lavender, including Lavandula stoechas (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

Other Deer Resistant Plants

Pungent herbs are generally unappetizing to the deer population, including Salvia (various types of sage), Nepeta (cat mint) and Origanum (oregano) species. For the shade, ferns are good bets, as are Helleborous, Choisya ternata, Hosta, Liriope, Sarcoccoca, Taxus and Trachelospermum (star jasmine).  There are


Rosemary has flowers in the blue shades, although there are some varieties with pink or white flowers.  Bees love it and deer are loathe to touch it at all.  There is a huge range in size from very low groundcover types

Carex divulsa

Carex divulsa (Berkeley sedge,  formerly known as Carex tumulicola) is a bright, evergreen grass twelve to eighteen inches tall.  It tolerates some traffic, drought, full sun and boggy conditions and is one of the best sedges for ground cover. It looks best with


Helictotrichon sempervirens (blue oat grass) is a silvery grass growing about eighteen inches with an upright habit.  It looks its best with some afternoon shade in the North County and requires average water.

Carex ‘Blue Zinger’

Carex glauca ‘Blue Zinger’ is a lovely, low growing ground cover with slender blue green blades. It does best in full sun and is hardy to zero degrees.

Leymus ‘Canyon Prince’

Leymus condensatus ‘Canyon Prince’ is a beautiful blue-gray grass that is very drought tolerant.  It spreads slowly by rhizomes, reaching four feet tall by three feet wide.


Carex tenuiculmis is a handsome, brownish red grass.  It grows two to three feet tall in full sun and needs only minimal water.  Carex testacea is another colorful grass that has very bright orange blades when planted in full sun.  It stays attractive throughout the year and likewise requires

Muhlenbergia rigens

This native California grass, commonly known as deer grass, can survive with very little water, although it looks best with at least some water.  The Getty Museum in Los Angeles has planted great stands of it.  The flower stems are very tall