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How to Plant Flowers That Rabbits & Deer Won't Eat

Rabbits and deer can be a gardener's worst nightmare. Animals you once considered to be cute and cuddly can sprout fangs and claws in your mind's eye once you see the absolute chaos they can wreak on the flowers and plants in your garden. Luckily, there are a few flowers that even hungry rabbits and deer will give a wide berth. Planting these flowers throughout your garden, as well as using other techniques, will help keep snacking wildlife at bay.

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  1. Select rabbit and deer-resistant flowers to plant in your garden. Some flowers that rabbits and deer tend to avoid eating include astilbe, daffodils, marigolds, snapdragons, daylilies, primrose and peonies.

  2. Choose a suitable planting location for your rabbit and deer-resistant flowers. Plant flowers labelled "Full Sun" in an area that receives six to eight hours of direct sunlight per day. Plant flowers labelled "Partial Sun" in an area that receives up to four hours of direct sunlight each day. Select a planting location that provides the appropriate amount of sunlight and offers your flowers well-draining soil.

  3. Sprinkle 1 tbsp of crushed red pepper into each of the planting holes when planting the flowers in your garden to make them even less appealing to rabbits, deer and other garden pests.

  4. Plant onions and garlic around the perimeter of your garden to discourage rabbits and deer from entering. Rabbits generally know better than to eat garlic or onions, which can trigger severe anaphylactic reactions, and even deer seem to find these powerfully potent plants less than appealing.

  5. Mix 2 tbsp of hot sauce into 10 gallons of filtered, purified or spring water. Spray the flowers in your garden with the hot sauce solution once every two weeks to further discourage rabbits and deer from eating them.

  6. Tip

    Animal repellent products can be purchased from your local garden centre or nursery. A good fence is often the most effective way to keep rabbits and deer from eating the flowers and plants in your garden.


    No flowers are absolutely rabbit or deer proof. When their preferred food is not available, rabbits and deer will eat almost anything to survive.

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Things You'll Need

  • Shovel
  • Spade
  • Crushed red pepper
  • Onions and garlic
  • Hot sauce
  • Filtered, purified or spring water

About the Author

Megan Mattingly-Arthur has been writing professionally since 1998. She has contributed to various publications, including "Teen Voices" and "Positive Teens" magazines, as well as a book, "The Young Writer's Guide to Getting Published." Mattingly-Arthur is studying travel and tourism through Penn Foster Career School.

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