Do Deer Eat Dahlias? 15 Ways To Keep Deer Away

Do deer eat dahlias? Read on to get the answer. If you live in a densely populated area, it is important to ensure the correct selection of plants.

You should also be asking yourself questions about wildlife preferences for your garden.

Do deer eat dahlias or are dahlias deer resistant is a question many ponder when opting for those plants in these areas. Deer tend to cause destruction to the flowers and foliage, which can be disappointing, to say the least.

Why Do Animals Eat Dahlias?

Dahlias are plants that have long stalks and are blessed with conspicuous flowers, they look similar to Zinnias (Find out the differences between Zinnias vs Dahlias).

The best part about these plants is that they do not require high maintenance and are pretty easy to manage.

Animals mostly love Dahlias because they are herbaceous in nature. Herbaceous plants do not possess woody stems, making them particularly pleasing to animals.

Slugs and snails are often found on the foliage and flowers of the dahlia plants.

Squirrels are seen to gnaw on the flowers and leaves of the plants too. These rodents are usually on the hunt for the bulbs of the plants. Chipmunks also copy this behavior of squirrels. Bunnies tend to avoid dahlias.

Are you wondering – Do deer eat dahlias? Well, the answer to this is that they do not like dahlias much either. However, there are condition some conditions that can lead them to munch on them.

Are Dahlias Safe From Deers?

Deer do not happily feed on these plants. However, dahlias can not be crossed entirely off the menu of the deer.

You can not term dahlias as deer-proof because there is no reason to stop them from munching on them – apart from their lack of fondness for it.

Do deer eat dahlias or not – this can be characterized by the following circumstances.

How To Prevent Dahlias- From deers

1. Differences In Region

The fondness for dahlias can vary with the region. If the deer is present in a region where there are not many deer, the competition for food is lesser. With lots of options, dahlias would not be their first choice of eating.

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If the deer is in a region that has a high habitat of deer, the competition for the food would be raised, which means that your gorgeous and lovely plants may be n danger.

2. The Variation in Seasons

Deer are quite active during the time of spring and summer. There is usually a large count of female deer that are pregnant at this time and are nurturing their young ones.

Food helps in the development of the animal, helps them in growth, and aids them in survival.  Due to the pregnancy, and the little ones, the need for food is raised.

In the season of spring, dahlias are in their peak blooms and would appear delicious to any deer who is hunting for its food.

How To Keep Deer Away From Dahlias?

While deer are not fond of dahlias, this does not mean that they will not eat them. If you see a deer foraging near a dahlia, you can use some ways to deter them from the plant.

Here are some ways that can help you in getting rid of deer from eating dahlias. 

1. Investigate Before Planting the Dahlias

It is very important that you scrutinize the options beforehand. Ask around for the population of deer in the neighborhood. You can understand the level of security you will require for them.

If deer are in large numbers, your dahlias would probably end up becoming a delicious meal for some due to the increased competition for food; hence you need to increase security levels,

If the deer are in lesser numbers, you can plant the dahlias with minimal to required precautions.

2. The Use of Ultrasonic Waves Can Help

You can take the aid of technology to assist you in repelling the deer away. You can find easily find some devices that help in giving out ultrasonic waves.

The ultrasonic device work by transmitting a high-frequency nose on some motion. When you put them to work, they can work well to scare away the deer.

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3. You Can Construct Barriers

You can get a fence built around the property to keep the deer away. Fencing can be a great idea to create barriers for the deer and protect your beautiful dahlias.

Your fence should be tall in height – opt for six to eight feet of fence in the garden, and this will help you in stopping the deer from jumping into the garden and enjoying your precious dahlias along with other plants.

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Deer do not like to put much effort into their food, and hence, they will try their luck with someone else’s garden instead of yours.

4. Grow Plants That Help In Deterring Deer

When you are growing dahlias, you can pair them up with some deer-repellent plants like Aster, Rose, Geranium, and Sedum.

Due to the presence of these plants, the deer would be likely to stay away from the dahlias.

Some other choices for your garden can be Snow Cap Grass, Blue Oat Grass, Blue Paradise Bluestem, and All Gold Hakone Grass – these all can help in ceasing the entrance of the deer in your garden.

The deer do not like textured plants, and hence they do not go near them.

Sage is another good option to add as a companion plant for dahlias. Humans enjoy the beautiful aroma of sage. However, deer do not share our enthusiasm for sage.

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You can use sage in your cooking, too, along with reaping the deterring benefits they have on deer.

What Are The Characteristics Of Plants That Deers Like To Eat?

While your question regarding Do deer eat dahlias or not has been answered, let’s see what sort of food is liked by the deer.

Do they like to nibble on small flowers, vegetables, or shrubs? Let’s learn about the food preference of deer in detail.

1. They Prefer To Have Soft Foliage, flowers, and Stems As Their Food

Deer are pleased by the tender and soft quality of the stems, leaves, and blooms. Hence, some top choices that the deer like due to their softness is lettuce and Plantain lilies.

Due to the search for softness, the deer usually eat young plants rather than the ones. If you have fresh buds and growth in the plants, the deer would most likely be attracted to it.

Plants like spinach and your spectacular flower bed can be completely destroyed by deer – leaving nothing behind than barren soils.

When the deer are eating, they pull at the plants and may even end up uprooting several small plants, even though they do not consume the roots.

2. They Prefer To Consume Plants Having Broad Leaves and Flowers

When searching for food, deer prefer to get broad, large, and flat petals and leaves. The foliage consisting of needle shapes is not the one for the deer.

They do not like to eat segmented leaves that are thin in shape – for example, fennel, marigolds, and chervils are plants that deer do not like to eat.

Like the thin and segmented leaves, the deer have some distaste for the long and thin plants – hence asters are not on the list of their preferences.

However, cabbage, lettuce, roses, and azaleas are loved by deer.

3. They Are Attracted To Good-Smelling Plants

Deer do not like scents that are too strong, especially medicinal and aromatic ones. Hence, they stay away from mint, lavender, sage, and musky geraniums.

Their preference for scents is light, and they like a rose that does not possess a strong scent too.

For vegetables, the deer are dissuaded by garlic and onions. They do not like fennel due to its aniseed scent. However, the cabbage has a strong scent, yet the deer want them due to the sweet smell.

4. They Prefer Smooth flowers and Stems.

Deer do not like textured and fuzzy plants. They dislike plants like hairy geraniums, zucchini leaves, lamb’s hair, borage, and so forth, for this reason. The texture is irritating to their palate and tongue.

The smooth surface of plantain lily, peas, chard, and English ivy is preferred by the deer due to its smoothness and softness.


Deer do not choose the dahlias as their first choice but they would eat them if they had to.

Hence, you should take the proper precautions if you are planning to grow dahlias in the region where deer and in large quantities.

Frequently Asked Questions

Q: Do Deer Like Sweet Tastes?

Yes, deer prefer plants that are sweet in taste. 

Anything that has a medicinal or bitter flavor would be promptly disgusting for the deer. They prefer to have a sweet taste.

Q: Do Deer Eat Pansies?

If you have chosen to plant pansies to add color in the winter, you should protect them. The deer are fond of these flowers and like to devour them.

Q: Do coffee grounds keep deer away?

If you’re looking to keep deer away, coffee grounds may be a good idea.

Coffee grounds are composed of ground coffee and other small pieces of coffee beans.

This combination makes for a strong smell and helps to discourage deer from eating your crops.

Q: Does Irish Spring soap keep deer away?

A recent study has shown that soap may be effective in repelling deer.

The soap is thought to help clear soil and attract other animals, making it a natural predator deterrent.

Q: what animals eat dahlias?

Dahlias are a type of flower that is typically eaten by animals, including deer, butterflies, bees, and birds. They are a type of annual flower that is found in warm climates.

Q: What smells do deer dislike?

What smells do deer dislike? There are many scents that deer find unpleasant, but some of the most popular smells are garlic and feces.

The smell of gasoline is also thought to make deer sick. Deer seem to avoid these scents as much as possible.

Q: Will dryer sheets keep deer away?

Dryer sheets are effective at keeping deer away. A recent study found that when the sheets are placed on the floor near deer, they will stay away.

Q: Is vinegar a deer repellent?

Is vinegar a deer repellent? It is a common question among hunters and outdoor enthusiasts.

Yes, vinegar is a strong scent for deer. Here are four reasons why vinegar may be a good repellent for deer:

1) It’s safe to use;
2) It’s nontoxic;
3) It can help keep leaves and flowers clean;
4) It can attract prey.

Q: Does human urine keep deer away from plants?

Humans use their urine as a way to attract mates and avoid predators. Now, scientists may have found a way to do the same for plants.

They found that when deer see human urine; the urine smells like flowers and makes the deer want to eat them.

The study was conducted by researchers from the University of Alberta in Canada.

Q: Does cinnamon keep deer away?

When trying to keep deer away, many people turn to cinnamon.

Cinnamon is a natural deterrent for deer, and it can also help to prevent them from coming into your property.

Q: do deer eat geraniums?

Geraniums smell too strong for deer to be interested in them.

People often say that geraniums are “deer-resistant,” but this doesn’t always mean “deer-proof.”

Deer might chew on geraniums if they don’t have much else to eat, like when the weather is bad or in areas with a lot of deer.

But deer usually won’t eat your geraniums unless something unusual happens.