What to Plant for Deer: Boost Your Garden’s Wildlife Appeal

What to Plant for Deer | Expert Gardening Tips

Do you love gardening and want to create an inviting habitat for beautiful deer in your backyard? Planting the right vegetation can help attract these majestic creatures while providing them with a nutritious food source. In this article, we will guide you on what to plant for deer and share some expert gardening tips.

Understanding Deer’s Diet

To effectively plant for deer, it’s important to understand their dietary preferences. Deer are herbivores and mainly consume leaves, twigs, fruits, and flowers. They have a preference for tender plants, such as grasses, legumes, and broadleaf species.

Top Deer-friendly Plants

1. Clover: Clover is highly attractive to deer due to its high protein content. Red clover and white clover are among their favorites. It’s a fast-growing perennial that can provide a constant food source.

2. Alfalfa: Alfalfa is another plant deer find irresistible. It offers an excellent source of nutrients and can be grown as a cover crop or in food plots.

3. Sunflowers: The bright yellow blooms of sunflowers make them a delightful addition to any garden. Deer are fond of their seeds, making them a popular choice for attracting these animals.

4. Apples: Planting apple trees not only adds beauty to your garden but also provides a tasty treat for deer. They love munching on apples, and you can even create deer-friendly orchards with a variety of apple tree species.

5. Blackberries: If you want to attract deer while satisfying your sweet tooth, blackberries are the answer. These delicious berries make a great addition to your garden and can provide an abundant food source for deer.

Gardening Tips for Planting for Deer

Here are some expert gardening tips to ensure successful planting for deer:

Tips Explanation
Plant in groups Planting in groups or clusters will create a more natural and appealing habitat, as it mimics how plants grow in the wild.
Utilize fencing If you have specific areas you want to protect from deer, consider installing fencing around those areas to deter them from entering.
Use deer-resistant plants as borders Planting deer-resistant plants around the perimeter of your garden can help protect the more desirable plants from deer grazing.
Control weeds Regular weeding is essential to ensure your desired plants receive the necessary nutrients and aren’t overshadowed by invasive species.
Provide water sources Deer require access to water, so consider incorporating a birdbath or small pond into your garden design.

Deer Deterrents

Despite your best efforts, some deer may still find their way into your garden. Here are a few deer deterrents you can try:

  • Repellent sprays: Commercial repellent sprays can be used to deter deer. Look for products made specifically for deer and use them according to the instructions.
  • Physical barriers: Installing deer fencing or netting around your garden can create a physical barrier to prevent deer from entering.
  • Motion-activated devices: Motion-activated sprinklers or lights can startle deer and discourage them from entering your garden.
  • Garden scents: Using predator scents like coyote urine or bars of scented soap can create an unpleasant environment for deer.

Frequently Asked Questions Of What To Plant For Deer: Boost Your Garden’s Wildlife Appeal

What Plants Do Deer Not Like?

Deer tend to avoid plants with strong fragrances, like lavender and rosemary. They also steer clear of prickly plants such as cacti and thorny roses.

How Can I Create A Deer-resistant Garden?

Creating a deer-resistant garden involves planting deer-deterring plants, using physical barriers like fences, and employing natural repellents like garlic, vinegar, and human hair.

Which Flowers Are Deer-resistant?

Deer-resistant flowers include daffodils, marigolds, snapdragons, and peonies. These blooms are less appealing to deer due to their strong scents or unpalatable tastes.

Can Deer-resistant Plants Attract Other Pests?

While deer-resistant plants are less appealing to deer, they can still attract other pests like rabbits, squirrels, and insects. Monitoring and utilizing additional pest-control methods may be necessary.


By planting the right vegetation for deer and incorporating some gardening tips, you can successfully attract these enchanting creatures to your garden. Remember to create a diverse habitat and implement some deer deterrents to protect your plants. Happy gardening!

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