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
4 ratings

Wednesday - April 07, 2010

From: Millville, NJ
Region: Mid-Atlantic
Topic: Deer Resistant
Title: Are Hollyhocks deer resistant?
Answered by: Jimmy Mills

QUESTION:

Are Hollyhocks deer resistant?

ANSWER:

Hollyhocks Alcea rosea  are popular ornamental plants that are thought to have been introduced into Europe from China and then later brought to North America (more images). Thomas Jefferson is said to have grown Hollyhocks at Montecello.

Since our focus at the Lady Bird Johnson Wildflower Center is to increase the sustainable use and conservation of native wildflowers, plants and landscapes, Hollyhocks are outside the area of our expertise.

However, if you go to our Special Collections page and click on Deer Resistant, you will find a list of native plants that deer tend to avoid. Although it is said that a hungry deer will eat anything.

Since Alcea rosea  is non-native, I wouldn't expect to find it on the list, but I did find four members of the family Malvaceae, the family to which A. rosea belongs, on the list. These are Turk's Cap Malvaviscus arboreus var. drummondii (wax mallow), Rosemallow Hibiscus lasiocarpos (rosemallow) , Rose Pavonia Pavonia lasiopetala (Texas swampmallow), and Virginia Saltmarsh Mallow Kosteletzkya virginica (Virginia saltmarsh mallow).

From this one might infer that Hollyhocks are also deer resistant. I would suggest that you contact the folks at the Coopervative Extension of Cumberland County to see if they have any first-hand experience with this.

 

 

 

More Deer Resistant Questions

Leguminous deer-resistant groundcover
August 25, 2008 - Please help me identify a deer-resistant leguminous ground cover native to Central Texas to serve as a guard plant in edible-plant groupings.
view the full question and answer

Using Sound to Repel Deer
July 15, 2013 - We have several motion activated water scarecrows for deer intrusions and have heard about sound scarecrows. Do you know if they are effective and do they bother pets such as cats, birds, etc.?
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

Deer deterrent for Texas Persimmon
September 23, 2004 - The deer have destroyed my Texas Persimmon by standing on their hind legs and pulling down the branches--either ripping them off entirely or twisting them. I didn't realize the persimmon fruit would...
view the full question and answer

Shady Perennial Groundcover Suggestions for Indiana
April 21, 2013 - Could you please recommend perennial groundcovers for Indiana that are low and leafy, self-spreading, non-invasive, deer resistant, and moisture tolerant; and that are good for erosion control on a sh...
view the full question and answer

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