Fawn with spots eating grass in yard.  The Best Deer-Resistant Plants for St. Louis.

The Best Deer-Resistant Plants for St. Louis

Deer grazing along a woodline forest creates an idyllic setting. But, this picturesque view of deer often doesn’t correspond well to our landscapes. Especially when you realize the grazing is happening on your hosta! Choosing deer-resistant plants will help you, your landscape, and the beautiful deer cohabitate.

With spring right around the corner, your landscape will be a veritable buffet for deer. It’s hard to find a home in West St. Louis County where deer haven’t terrorized the landscape. Deer prefer being next to wooded areas or in clearings where food is often more prevalent. Being that much of West County is wooded land, that makes your yard a Whole Foods wonderland!

Large white-tailed with antlers standing in front of the woods.
Photo Courtesy of skeeze from Pixabay

While repellents and scare tactics may briefly keep the deer away, the best way to keep damage at a minimum is to plant what they don’t like. Choosing deer-resistant plants will allow your landscape a chance to survive and thrive. These common deer-resistant plants for St. Louis will help you get your landscape started off right.

These plants have been chosen as being the most Deer-Resistant for the St. Louis area. They are not necessarily Deer-Proof.

Perennials:

Astilbe, Astilbe spp.Foxglove, Digitalis spp.Pinks, Dianthus spp.
Bee Balm, Monarda spp.Goldenrod, Solidago spp.Purple Coneflower, Echinacea purpurea
Bergenia, Bergenia spp.Hellebore, Helleborus nigraRussian Sage, Perovskia atriplicifolia
Black-Eyed Susan, Rudbeckia spp.Hibiscus, Hibiscus spp.Sage, Salvia spp.
Bleeding Heart, Dicentra spectabilisIris, Iris spp.Sedum, Sedum spp.
Catmint, Nepeta spp.Japanese Anemone, Anemone x hybridaShasta Daisy, Chrysanthemum
Columbine, Aquilegia spp.Lady’s Mantle, Alchemilla MollisSnakeroot, Cimicifuga racemosa
Coreopsis, Coreopsis verticillataLamb’s Ear, Stachys byzantinaSnakeroot – white, Eupatorium rogosum
Cranesbill, Geranium spp.Lavender, Lavandula spp.Sneezeweed, Helenium autumnale
Euphorbia, Euphorbia spp.Ostrich Fern, MatteucciaSpeedwell, Veronica spp.
Foam Flower, Tiarella cordifoliaPeony, Paeonia spp.Yarrow, Achillea spp.
*Most Ornamental Grasses

Annuals:

Ageratum, AgeratumFlowering Tobacco, NicotianaSnapdragon, Antirrhinum
Alyssum, LobulariaHeliotrope, HeliotropiumZinnia, Zinnia
Begonia – wax, Begonia xLantana, Lantana
Dusty Miller, JacobaeaMarigold, Tagetes

Groundcover:

Bugle Weed, Ajuga spp.Pachysandra, Pachysandra spp.Vinca, Vinca minor
Lily-of-the-Valley, Convallaria majalisSedum, Sedum spp.

Shrubs:

Azalea – Deciduous, Rhododendron spp.Holly – Chinese, Ilex cornutaLilac – common, Syringa vulgaris
Barberry, Berberis spp.Holly – Inkberry, Ilex glabraMugo Pine, Pinus mugo
Bayberry, Myrica spp.Holly – Japanese, Ilex crenataPrivet – golden, Ligustrum x vicaryi
Cotoneaster, Cotoneaster spp.Judd Viburnum, Viburnum x juddiiSmoke Bush, Cotinus spp.
Doublefile Viburnum, Viburnum plicatum tom.Juniper – Chinese, Juniperus chinensisSpirea, Spiraea spp.
Firethorn, Pyracantha spp.Korean Spice Viburnum, Viburnum carlesiiWillow, Salix spp.
Forsythia, Forsythia spp.Leatherleaf Viburnum, Viburnum rhy.Witch Hazel, Hamamelis spp.

Trees:

Bald Cypress, Taxodium distichumGinkgo, Ginkgo bilobaRedbud, Cercis canadensis
Beech, Fagus sylvaticaHolly – American, Ilex opacaSpruce, Picea spp.
Birch, Betula spp.Larch, Larix spp.Sweet Gum, Liquidambar styraciflua
Cherry – Japanese, Prunus serrulataLocust – Honey, Gleditsia triacanthosSycamore, Platanus occidentalis
Dogwood – Kousa, Cornus kousaMaple – Sugar, Acer saccharumTulip Tree, Liriodendron
Eastern Red Cedar, Juniperus virginianaPine – Austrian, Pinus nigra
*While these trees are considered deer-resistant, they are still likely to receive deer rubs in heavily populated areas.

Keep in mind, while the deer-resistant list is for plants that they do not favor to eat, they still may munch. They especially enjoy the new spring foliage that is about to appear. It also will have little to no effect on the bucks rubbing their antlers. You can minimize damage to young trees by temporarily wrapping the trunks with draintile.

Deer fawn with spots, curled up on lawn.
Photo Courtesy of skeeze from Pixabay

While we may not get every plant we want, choosing deer-resistant plants allows us to maintain our landscapes and still enjoy the wildlife.

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