En Espa—ol
Share

Ask Mr. Smarty Plants

Mr. Smarty Plants - Deer resistant groundcovers in Georgetown, TX

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
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

Wednesday - May 20, 2009

From: Georgetown, TX
Region: Southwest
Topic: Deer Resistant
Title: Deer resistant groundcovers in Georgetown, TX
Answered by: Barbara Medford

QUESTION:

Is silver ponyfoot inviting deer into the yard? What are good alternatives, deer resistant, for large areas of groundcover, 100-200 sq. ft.?

ANSWER:

Concrete.

Deer resistant means it might be aromatic, prickly, tough or the deer weren't hungry that day. Everything invites deer into the yard, except possibly a large dog.There are three dichondras native to Texas: Dichondra argentea (silver ponysfoot), Dichondra carolinensis (Carolina ponysfoot) and Dichondra recurvata (oakwoods ponysfoot). None of them appear on our Deer Resistant Plants list, which probably means deer love them.

Since this is hardly a unique question to Mr. Smarty Plants, we have a  Previous answer that actually addresses a similar question in Arlington, TX.

Now, let us tell you how to know what we know on deer resistance. Go to our previously mentioned  Deer Resistant Plants list, and for your purpose you will probably want to select on "herb" (herbaceous blooming plant) and then read the plant descriptions to see if you can find a suitable plant in terms of size, etc. We did this and found, first thing,  Aphanostephus riddellii (Riddell's dozedaisy), native to Texas and even found in the Georgetown area according to this USDA Plant Profile. It is a perennial, blooms white March to June, low water usage, needs sun, and its deer resistance is moderate. That means the deer will have it for their second course, when they are not quite so hungry. 

We suggest you follow this same procedure to see if you can find something suitable for your purposes. However, to quote the introduction to our Deer Resistant Species list:

"Few plants are completely deer resistant. Several factors influence deer browsing including the density of the deer population, environmental conditions such as drought, and plant palatability. Deer tend to avoid plants with aromatic foliage, tough leathery and/or hairy or prickly leaves or plants with milky latex or sap. Try using some of the plants listed here to minimize deer damage to your landscape."


Aphanostephus riddellii

Dichondra argentea

Dichondra carolinensis

Dichondra recurvata

 



 

More Deer Resistant Questions

Deer resistance of non-native Loropetalum
April 01, 2008 - I love Loropetalum (Plum Delight). Is it Deer Resistant?
view the full question and answer

Perennial plants native to northeastern Pennsylvania
May 12, 2005 - What perennial plants are native to northeastern Pennsylvania?
view the full question and answer

Deer Resistance and Erosion Control for St. Louis County MO
January 03, 2014 - I am looking for deer and rabbit resistant native plants for erosion control on a steep ravine slope with part sun and part shade in St. Louis County MO.
view the full question and answer

Deer resistance of maple leaf viburnum in Austin
November 20, 2009 - Looking on the Texas Plant Information Database for Maple Leaf Viburnum, I donít find any information about deer (whitetail or axis, southern edge of Edwards Plateau) resistance. Other sites give mixe...
view the full question and answer

Deer resistant native plants for Eagle Scout project in Urbandale IA
April 27, 2013 - Mr. Smarty Plants, My son is planning his Eagle Scout Project doing some landscaping for the Iowa Primate Learning Sanctuary. The facility has asked him to use only plants native to Iowa. Can you su...
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.
E-NEWSLETTER | BECOME A MEMBER | DONATE NOW | MEDIA | SITEMAP
© 2014 Lady Bird Johnson Wildflower Center