Types of Plants That Are Deer Resistant

Deer will munch your favorite blooms and can wreak havoc on your garden in a matter of days. But planting deer-resistant flowers and shrubs will reduce the chance of deer visiting, and will keep the garden alive with color and texture. Deer-resistant plants are essential in landscapes that are prone to deer, and grow in dozens of varieties, each with its own distinct color, shape and size,


Yarrow (Achillea millefolium 'Terracotta') is a perennial flower with a rapid growth rate and spreading habit. Deer resistant, yarrow grows 1 to 3 feet tall and wide. The daisy-like blooms of yarrow are flat-topped and grow in a wide range of colors including, peach, yellow and orange. Yarrow's finely textured foliage is silver to green to contrast with the bright flowerheads. A butterfly attractant, yarrow blooms in late summer and lasts into fall, making for a long-lasting flower. Ideal tucked into containers or used as a fresh cut flower, yarrow requires full sun and well-drained soil to thrive. Drought-tolerant, yarrow withstands periods of limited moisture, ideal in arid climates where rainfall is low. Divide yarrow in spring or fall to grow in other areas of the garden. Plant yarrow in U.S. Department of Agriculture (USDA) hardiness zones 4 to 9.

Spiral Aloe

Spiral aloe (Aloe polyphylla) is a variety of succulent that repels deer from the garden and has a clumping growth habit. The striking spiral shape is made up of spine-tipped, pale green to blue leaves. Mature spiral aloe plants have five rows of leaves that grow counterclockwise or clockwise for a showy garden display. Growing 6 to 12 inches tall and wide, spiral aloe is ideal when planted in a rock garden or tucked into a container with other succulents and cacti. Spiral aloe requires full sun to part shade and excellent drainage. Plant in USDA zone 11.

Ghost Fern

Ghost ferns (Athyrium 'Ghost') are a variety of fern with a moderate growth rate. Deer resistant, ghost fern grow in open clumps ranging from 1 to 3 feet tall and wide. The silver fronds have new growth that emerges in a shimmery white hue, hence the name ghost fern. Overtime, the fronds darken to green and silver with burgundy accents. Ideal as a ground cover or tucked along a front bed, ghost ferns complements other plants within the garden. Ghost fern fronds emerge in spring and last into summer. They grow best in light shade to full shade and moist, well-drained soil that is fertile. Plant in USDA zones 3 to 8.

Keywords: deer resistant plants, yarrow flowers, spiral aloe, ghost fern

About this Author

Callie Barber is a writer, designer and photographer in North Carolina. Barber's love for design and writing inspired her to create Design Your Revolution, a blog that shares creative and affordable ways to decorate your indoor and outdoor living environment. Her articles have appeared in Travels.com and GardenGuides.com and her photography has been featured in "Automotive News" magazine and Forbes.com.