Do Deer Eat Roses? (And How To Keep Them Away)

Roses are best known for their perfect fragrance and gorgeous blooms. Primarily found in US hardiness zones 2 to 11, roses are loved by both newbie and expert gardeners. But gardening enthusiasts aren’t the sole bunch to adore roses- like them, deer too have a close affinity to your rose bushes. At certain times, you will practically find them appearing from thin air simply to devour your roses.

So, how do you protect your rose bush from deer attacks? Also, how exactly do you understand whether your bushes are indeed being infiltrated by deer? Well, these are some of the many questions we will aim to unearth over the course of this article. So, if you are a gardener who’s absolutely tired of deer attacks, here is everything you might want to know.

Why Do Deer Like Roses?

As with humans, deer are probably attracted to the fragrance of roses. And if they are hungry enough, the fragrance can end up luring them to consume the bush. The result? You will be left with a half-eaten rose bush, with messy twigs all over the place.

At this point, it is also important to identify whether deer are indeed eating your rose bushes or is it some another animal who is doing the deed. Remember, one of the biggest qualities of deer lies in their tiny size that makes it easier for them to infiltrate your property and devour the roses.

In fact, even before detecting obvious signs of damage, there are some ways to detect the presence of deer in your vegetation. One of the easiest ways to identify this is with hoof prints and deer pellets both of which are commonly scattered by deer when they consider visiting your lawn.

It is also worth noting that not all kinds of deer will visit your lawn. In general, it is the Mule and the black-tailed deer who are known to do the deed. Deer primarily visit your lawns during the colder months when it’s almost impossible for them to source food. However, if your yard is in proximity to breeding zones, deer can be a major problem throughout the year.

How Do I Keep Deer From Eating My Roses?

Although deer can be a menace to your beloved roses, it does not necessarily have to be that way. This is even more true if you use the right deer-proof strategies. For those who are wondering how to achieve this goal, here are some pointers that might help you.

1. Use Ultrasonic Repellants

This is one of the simplest ways to ward off deer from your property. Ultrasonic deer repellants are not just convenient, but they are equally easy to operate and effective. The best part: they practically require zero maintenance from the owner.

But how exactly do these electronic repellants work? Well, the idea is simple. These devices operate by broadcasting some specific frequencies which over time, might bother the deer in the vicinity. Since all you need to do is set up the device to reap the benefits, it is certainly an excellent way to keep deer away from your yard.

Since most of these repellants are crafted from high-end materials, you can keep them right outside your property throughout the year. They aren’t susceptible to wear and tear, and they will do an excellent job throughout the year in keeping deer away from your property.

2. Get the Right Spray

Yes! You can also get deer repellants in spray form. These sprays are detested by deer and since they are specifically targeted for warding deer off, they will do an excellent job in safeguarding your property.

Most of these sprays are created from a bunch of organic ingredients like peppers and rotten eggs. When sprayed around your plants, the deer will be duly convinced that your roses aren’t at all delicious.

Interestingly, the biggest benefit of these sprays lies in the fact that they are practically odorless to us humans. Since we cannot smell it, it will not tamper with the aesthetics either. Additionally, since it does not leave residues or stains on your plants, your roses are now extra safe from all potential issues.

3. Try Deer Repellant Granules

This is yet another great way to protect your property from deer. All you need to do is scatter the granules right around the ground. Make sure you keep them near the rose bushes which in turn will prevent the deer from venturing near your flowers.

While adding the granules, make sure they are properly spread out and are a couple of feet far from your rose bush. This way, the deer won’t manage to reach over your beloved shrubs at any point.

The distinctive quality about these granules is that they almost resemble the scent of dead deer. Since deer won’t love venturing in a property that reek of dead bodies, your rose bushes are now truly safe.

Most of these granules are created from organic materials and once their life is done and dusted, they almost naturally break down into fertilizer. Since all you need to do is zero in on the right brand and just scatter the granules around, this is certainly a great way to repel deer and similar other animals from entering your property.

4. Get some Sprinklers

If you want to repel deer and not hurt them, consider using deer repellant sprinklers. You will find several brands of these sprinklers out there, most of which will appear like water at the outset. However, in their truest essence, these are excellent devices to ward off deer.

The idea behind these products is simple. They are but a friendly water spray that scares deer and keeps them from coming near your roses. Several gardening enthusiasts have used them and found them to be an excellent way to keep deer out of one’s property for several days at a stretch.

Most sprinklers feature automated sensors that detect the very moment when deer are encroaching your yard. Right after that, they will start spraying the deer up to an impressive 35 ft. Many people vouch for these devices, deeming them an excellent product for extra security. They are certainly a great product, and when it comes to deterring deer, you will barely find an equally harmless and yet incredibly useful option.

5. Solar Lights

Let’s face it: as much as deer enjoy a hearty meal of rose bushes and flowers, they are also super scared by intense lights. So, you can always use a quality solar light and team it up with a regular floodlight for the best results. We are recommending another floodlight because solar lights only operate during the night. Over the day, the lights get automatically turned off and the product recharges itself through the advanced solar panels.

But regardless of this, the product is a useful addition to your home, especially if you are planning to protect your property from deer during the night. Most deer do not enjoy the kind of light patterns produced by these devices. The result: they won’t venture near it and thus leave your rose bushes alone.

Since almost all reputed brands sell these products, you can always explore your options and get the right kind of solar light for deer proofing your garden.

What Kind of Flowers Do Deer Not Eat?

Typically, deer will eat any flower or plant they encounter when they are hungry enough. However, there are some specific flowers and plants, that repel deer. These are usually plants that come with an intense fragrance.

Since most deer are repelled by strong-smelling flowers are plants, you can always plant a couple of them around your rose bush to prevent the frequency and instances of deer attacks. Common deer-repellant flowering plants include lavenders, peonies, and sages. You can also try ivies as most deer find them stinky.

If this still doesn’t work out, try getting poisonous plants like daffodils and poppies. Since the flowers of these plants are toxic, most deer won’t try devouring them.

What Other Animals Eat Roses?

While deer and squirrel are the top animals that might devour your roses, there might be other insects adding to this list. We are especially talking about insects like slugs, mites, Japanese beetles, scales, weevils, and thrips.

Although it is not as common, your rose bush might also be at risk from bears. So, if you live in a forested area, you might want to take precautionary measures about both bears and deer.

Deer are like any other animal who will instinctively look for food when hungry. So, if you think your property is getting invaded by deer, consider following our tried and tested hacks to make your garden deer-proof. Since most of the listed products are easily available and low-maintenance, you won’t encounter any issues while using them on your property. All you need to do is keep exploring, find the right solution for your property, and then be patient enough for it to work. If followed the right way, our strategies will certainly keep deer away from your property in the long run.

Share on:

About Arindom Ghosh

A professional writer, editor, blogger, copywriter, and a member of the International Association of Professional Writers and Editors, New York. He has been part of many reputed domestic and global online magazines and publications. An avid reader and a nature lover by heart, when he is not working, he is probably exploring the secrets of life.