En EspaŅol

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
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
1 rating

Monday - October 08, 2012

From: Austin, TX
Region: Southwest
Topic: Deer Resistant, Shade Tolerant, Herbs/Forbs
Title: Is straggler daisy deer resistant from Austin
Answered by: Barbara Medford

QUESTION:

Is straggler daisy (horseherb) deer resistant? We have lots of deer in our NW Hills, Austin neighborhood, and a lot of shade where not much will grow. Is that plant a good candidate for ground cover where there are deer?

ANSWER:

Please follow this plant link, Calyptocarpus vialis (Straggler daisy), to our webpage on it, where you will learn it is a fast-growing, nice low ground groundcover that can tolerate moderate foot traffic. It is native to Travis County, according to this USDA Plant Profile Map, so that means it should not use too many resources, like water, and certainly not fertilizer. What you will not learn is whether or not it is deer resistant, because we don't know. We have a deer-resistant species list, and you should read this statement:

"Deer Resistant Species

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."

However, this is a very sturdy plant, easily spread to the point that many gardeners consider it a weed. We could hope that either it will be so low that the deer won't eat it, or they won't be able to eat it faster than it can spread. Even so, they will be eating something that you didn't have to spend a lot of money on, or a lot of time caring for it. We would think it would be worth a try, at least distracting the deer from plants that are more valuable to you.

 

From the Image Gallery


Straggler daisy
Calyptocarpus vialis

Straggler daisy
Calyptocarpus vialis

Straggler daisy
Calyptocarpus vialis

More Shade Tolerant Questions

Drought & Deer Resistant Shrub for Shade in Medina, TX
June 14, 2013 - We are dedicated to native plants in Medina, but are desperate to find a drought and deer resistant shrub for shade. Would we be too far off base with an oleander bush? We know birds and most butterfl...
view the full question and answer

Wax myrtle in partial shade in Dothan AL
March 13, 2009 - Will the Wax Myrtle do well in the 36303 area code in partial shade?
view the full question and answer

Ground cover under Juniper for San Antonio
September 14, 2012 - I have a shaded area under juniper in the Hill Country of Texas that has many sprouts from the tree. We have to weed whack it to keep them under control. What ground cover could I use to enhance tha...
view the full question and answer

Native ground cover for part shade in Dowagiac MI
June 24, 2009 - Maybe I'm just too picky. I'm trying to make an area that is some what triangular shaped between my house and garage with a tall lattice/privacy fence on one side and walks in the back yard area on...
view the full question and answer

ground covers for shady areas in New York City
June 27, 2011 - Dear Mr. Smarty Plants: What would be the best ground covers for big shady areas in New York City instead of lawns?
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 | STAFF
© 2015 Lady Bird Johnson Wildflower Center