Home > Great Big Greenhouse Blog > October 2017 > BONNIE'S GARDEN--Got Deer, You Need These Bulbs:

BONNIE'S GARDEN--Got Deer, You Need These Bulbs:

You are very “Virginia” if you have red clay soil or granite gravel in your yard (or, in my case, BOTH) or deer in your yard... 

But there are deer-resistant bulbs!  And, keep in mind, all of these are also vole resistant.  So here are some of the best of the best:

Narcissus/Daffodils/Jonquils—just to set the record straight, narcissus is the botanical name, daffodil is the correct common name, jonquil refers to a specific kind of daffodil.  Whatever you choose to call them, deer don’t eat them, squirrels don’t eat them, voles don’t eat them.  YAY!

Alliums--Alliums are members of the onion family.  There are little 10 inch tall ones perfect for borders and dramatic four foot tall giants with eight inch flower heads and sizes in-between.  They need only two things to perform well—full sun and well-drained soil.

Muscari—These are the cute little grape hyacinths you remember growing around the stump in grandma’s yard.  They naturalize well, and come in white and shades of blue from navy to silver-blue.

Hyacinths—As if they fact that they come in a rainbow of colors AND are incredibly fragrant, weren’t enough, these are also deer-resistant.

Snowdrops—One of the earliest blooming bulbs, snowdrops often bloom in February—even under snow!  They’re dainty, sweet, and tough as nails!

Hyacinthoides, also known as Wood Hyacinths or Spanish Bluebells—One of my favorite bulbs, Wood Hyacinths are shade tolerant and bloom in May with pretty spires of blue (or pink or white).  There is another version, the English Bluebell, which is also deer-resistant.

Ipheion or Spring Starflower—another favorite.  It blooms for an incredibly long time in the spring with fragrant starry flowers in blue.  It naturalizes readily and even tolerates that red clay/granite gravel combo in my backyard.

Fritillaria aka Crown Imperials—Not only do critters not eat this one, but this bulb is said to help repel voles.  The beautiful red or yellow bells of flowers don’t let on that the bulb underground actually smells a bit like a skunk. 

Iris—From the 6 to 8” tall early blooming minis to the 2 foot tall May-blooming Dutch iris to the large-flowered bearded iris, all of these are hardy and very pest-resistant.

Peonies—Huge fragrant perennial flowers and deer won’t eat them either?  Wow.

Gee, I’m running out of space and I still haven’t mentioned Chionodoxa (Glory of the Snow), Puschkinia (Lebanon Squill), Scilla Siberica or anemones.  Deer problems or vole problems, you can still have beautiful spring color in your yards and—here’s a tip for you.  You can even enjoy tulips—just plant daffodils around the outside!
Posted: 10/9/2017 by Bonnie Pega | with 0 comment(s)
Filed under: Bonnies, Bulbs, Deer, Garden
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