Explore Plants

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
    
 

Can't find the answer in our existing FAQs, submit a question to Mr. Smarty Plants.
Need help with plant identification, visit the plant identification page.

rate this answer
Not Yet Rated

Monday - April 20, 2009

From: Greenfield Center, NY
Region: Northeast
Topic: Deer Resistant
Title: Deer resistant evergreen shrubs for Saratoga Springs, NY
Answered by: Barbara Medford

QUESTION:

Deer resistant, evergreen shrubs for Saratoga Springs, NY.

ANSWER:

Unfortunately, that leaves very few choices in New York, wanting both deer-resistant plants and evergreen. The Lady Bird Johnson Wildflower Center is committed to the use and propagation of plants native not only to North America but to the area in which they are being grown. Since you are in USDA Hardiness Zone 4a, which has average annual minimum temperatures of -30 to -25, there is not much that can withstand that, with the exception of some conifers, all of which get way too big to be treated as a shrub. You do know, we're sure, that deer will eat just about anything when their natural forage has been eliminated or disturbed by urban development. They don't like spiky, thorny, aromatic foliage, but it doesn't seem likely than an agave would survive more than 20 minutes in January in New York. We're going to suggest that you contact Cornell University Extension Services, Saratoga County NY Gardening Resources for some possible ideas they have that we don't.

We have a Special Collections list of Deer Resistant Species. We searched it specifying New York and shrubs, and came up with six shrubs, of which only one is evergreen. There is also one we threw in because it's evergreen, a small shrub and attractive, but we can't find any information on its deer resistance: Arctostaphylos uva-ursi (kinnikinnick), which probably means it isn't.

Deer resistant shrubs in New York

Amorpha fruticosa (desert false indigo) - highly resistant, deciduous

Ceanothus herbaceus (Jersey tea) - highly resistant,deciduous

Cephalanthus occidentalis (common buttonbush) - moderately resistant, evergreen

Rhus aromatica (fragrant sumac) - highly resistant, deciduous

Symphoricarpos orbiculatus (coralberry) - moderately resistant, deciduous

Ptelea trifoliata (common hoptree) - highly resistant, deciduous

 

 

 

More Deer Resistant Questions

Deer resistant plants for Pittsburgh PA
January 30, 2012 - What shrubs can I plant on a wet slope that gets partial sun that will help control erosion? They need to be something the deer won't eat! We have lots of deer.
view the full question and answer

Deer proof ground cover for sunny area in Mississippi
June 09, 2012 - I am looking for a low ground cover that will thrive in a sunny location and is deer proof
view the full question and answer

Is Smooth Sumac deer resistant
September 01, 2008 - Dear Mr. Smarty Plants, I noticed there was no deer resistant rating for smooth sumac in your plant data base. Aromatic sumac is rated as 'high'. Do you have an opinion on deer resistance for smo...
view the full question and answer

Deer resistant low-lying plants for Michigan
May 13, 2009 - I want to create a bed of low lying plants (under 4 ft.)in the front of my cottage. The soil is completely sandy and gets eastern sun in the AM. There are many deer in the area.
view the full question and answer

Evergreen, deer resistant privacy screen for Villanova PA
March 29, 2013 - Looking for something that is deer resistant and ideally evergreen to block a shed and fence that my neighbor recently installed. Live in Eastern PA. Not the best drainage and also shade for most of...
view the full question and answer

Smarty Plants's Facebook profile Support the Wildflower Center by Donating Online or Becoming a Member today.

Mr. Smarty Plants wants you to be his Facebook friend. Click the Facebook icon to add yourself to Mr. Smarty Plants list of friends.