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

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Saturday - June 09, 2012

From: Oxford, MI
Region: Southeast
Topic: Deer Resistant, Groundcovers
Title: Deer proof ground cover for sunny area in Mississippi
Answered by: Nan Hampton

QUESTION:

I am looking for a low ground cover that will thrive in a sunny location and is deer proof

ANSWER:

In the first place, there are no "deer proof" plants.   There are plants that are deer resistant—usually.  However, when times get tough for deer, they will sometimes eat those plants that they formerly avoided.   In general, aromatic plants like those in the Family Lamiaceae (Mint Family) are avoided by deer, but there are others.   Here are a few that are native to Mississippi, evergreen or semi-evergreen, love the sun and are low ground covers that deer avoid:

Phlox subulata (Moss phlox), according to Harding's Gardens (Ithaca, NY) and Missouri Botanical Gardens, it is deer resistant.

Carex texensis (Texas sedge) does well in sun and part shade.

Phyla nodiflora (Texas frogfruit) is semi-evergreen, but grows in sun and part shade.

Salvia lyrata (Lyreleaf sage) is evergreen with blue flowers.

You can see more deer resistant plants in our list Deer Resistant Species list.  You can use the NARROW YOUR SEARCH option to select "Mississippi" from Select State or Province to see those plants on the list that are native to Mississippi.

 

 

From the Image Gallery


Creeping phlox
Phlox subulata

Texas sedge
Carex texensis

Texas frogfruit
Phyla nodiflora

Lyreleaf sage
Salvia lyrata

Lyreleaf sage
Salvia lyrata

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