Rent Shop Volunteer Join

Q. Who is Mr. Smarty Plants?

A: There are those who suspect Wildflower Center volunteers are the culpable and capable culprits. Yet, others think staff members play some, albeit small, role. You can torture us with your plant questions, but we will never reveal the Green Guru's secret identity.

Help us grow by giving to the Plant Database Fund or by becoming a member

Did you know you can access the Native Plant Information Network with your web-enabled smartphone?

Share

Ask Mr. Smarty Plants

Ask Mr. Smarty Plants is a free service provided by the staff and volunteers at the Lady Bird Johnson Wildflower Center.

Search Smarty Plants
See a list of all Smarty Plants questions

Please forgive us, but Mr. Smarty Plants has been overwhelmed by a flood of mail and must take a break for awhile to catch up. We hope to be accepting new questions again soon. Thank you!

Need help with plant identification, visit the plant identification page.

 
rate this answer
Not Yet Rated

Wednesday - January 23, 2008

From: Dammeron Valley, UT
Region: Rocky Mountain
Topic: Deer Resistant, Cacti and Succulents, Herbs/Forbs, Shrubs
Title: Plants that are deer resistant for high desert climate in Utah
Answered by: Nan Hampton

QUESTION:

We are building in a high desert climate in Dammeron Valley, Utah. We want plants that are both deer resistant and require little watering. Can you advise which plants (shrubs, flowers, cacti) that would be good to use?

ANSWER:

This is a tough assignment you have given Mr. Smarty Plants—deer-resistant, high desert plants. Cactus are ideal, of course, and we do have other suggestions for shrubs/small trees and herbaceous plants. Be aware that, except for the cactus, the other plants listed may be browsed by deer when conditions are tough. They are deer-resistant, not deer-proof.

CACTUS

Ferocactus cylindraceus (California barrel cactus)

Echinocereus triglochidiatus (kingcup cactus)

Opuntia basilaris (beavertail pricklypear)

Opuntia phaeacantha (tulip pricklypear)

Opuntia polyacantha (plains pricklypear)

YUCCA

Yucca baccata (banana yucca)

SHRUBS/TREES

Rhus trilobata (skunkbush)

Larrea tridentata (creosote bush)

Lycium andersonii (water jacket) (and a photograph of L. andersonii)

Juniperus osteosperma (Utah juniper) (and photos of J. osteosperma)

HERBACEOUS

Verbena bracteata (bigbract verbena)

Tetraneuris acaulis (stemless four-nerve daisy)

Penstemon palmeri (Palmer's penstemon)

Oenothera caespitosa (fragrant evening primrose)

Monardella odoratissima (mountain monardella)

 

From the Image Gallery


California barrel cactus
Ferocactus cylindraceus

Claret cup
Echinocereus triglochidiatus

Beavertail pricklypear
Opuntia basilaris

Tulip prickly pear
Opuntia phaeacantha

Plains prickly pear
Opuntia polyacantha

Banana yucca
Yucca baccata

Creosote bush
Larrea tridentata

Butte marigold
Tetraneuris acaulis var. acaulis

Palmer's penstemon
Penstemon palmeri

Tufted evening primrose
Oenothera caespitosa

Alpine mountainbalm
Monardella odoratissima

More Shrubs Questions

Is the fruit of American Beautyberry (French Mulberry) edible?
March 22, 2012 - I am trying to find out if the "American Beautyberry" or "French Mulberry" fruit is edible? Can you tell me? Your website's information about this plant has been the most informative informatio...
view the full question and answer

Shrub that does not attract birds in Michigan
June 17, 2009 - Does a "Center Glow" ninebark have seeds? I want a shrub that does NOT attract birds!
view the full question and answer

Lilac bush roots dangerous to house foundations
August 06, 2008 - Are lilac bushes dangerous to the foundation of a house? There is a lovely white-blooming lilac that grows against the house outside my bedroom window. My ex-husband said that the roots would destro...
view the full question and answer

Does Buttonbush Spread?
May 20, 2015 - I live in Los Angeles County. Does Buttonbush spread via its roots/rhizomes? I've got a picture I could send in a reply. Gotta know if it's, what I see, a part of the buttonbush.
view the full question and answer

Ligustrums planted last summer are doing poorly in Houston, TX.
March 06, 2012 - I planted large mature ligustrums trees (~ 8 ft) last summer and the leaves are turning yellow and falling off. Can you please tell me what the cause of this might be and what we can do to prevent th...
view the full question and answer

Support the Wildflower Center by Donating Online or Becoming a Member today.