Deer can be a common garden nuisance, and protecting your annual flowers from their browsing is essential. In this expert guide, we will explore 15 deer-resistant annual flowers that you can grow in your garden. Our recommendations are based on insights from horticultural experts, government horticultural agencies, and academic research.

Understanding Deer-Resistant Annuals

Before we delve into the list of annual flowers, let’s establish what makes a flower deer-resistant and the benefits of choosing these plants for your garden.

What Are Deer-Resistant Annuals?

  • Deer-resistant annuals are flowers that are less appealing to deer, making them less likely to be eaten or damaged by these animals.
  • While no plant is entirely deer-proof, deer-resistant annuals have natural compounds or scents that deter deer from feeding on them.

Benefits of Deer-Resistant Annuals

  • Planting deer-resistant annuals can help protect your garden from deer damage, ensuring your flowers thrive and bloom.
  • These flowers can reduce the need for costly deer repellents or fencing to keep deer at bay.

Top Deer-Resistant Annual Flowers

Marigold (Tagetes spp.)

  • Cultivation Tip: Marigolds are known for their pungent scent, which deters deer, making them a popular choice for gardens.
  • Reference: University of California Agriculture and Natural Resources

Snapdragon (Antirrhinum majus)

  • Cultivation Tip: Snapdragons offer a variety of colors and have a bitter taste, making them less appealing to deer.
  • Reference: The National Gardening Association

Nasturtium (Tropaeolum majus)

  • Cultivation Tip: Nasturtiums have peppery foliage, which deer tend to avoid, and they add a burst of color to your garden.
  • Reference: The University of Florida IFAS Extension

Zinnia (Zinnia spp.)

  • Cultivation Tip: Zinnias are deer-resistant due to their strong scent and bright blooms that deter browsing.
  • Reference: The American Horticultural Society (AHS)

Salvia (Salvia spp.)

  • Cultivation Tip: Salvias, with their aromatic foliage and vibrant flowers, are not a preferred food source for deer.
  • Reference: University of Illinois Extension


Growing deer-resistant annual flowers is a practical and attractive solution to protect your garden from deer damage. Whether you choose the aromatic Marigolds, the bitter-tasting Snapdragons, or the peppery Nasturtiums, these annuals will not only add beauty to your garden but also help keep it free from deer browsing. Happy gardening!

Here are 10 frequently asked questions (FAQs) about deer-resistant annual flowers

What are deer-resistant annual flowers, and how do they differ from other types of flowers in terms of their resistance to deer browsing?

Why is it important to choose deer-resistant annual flowers for your garden, and what are the benefits of these plants in deer-prone areas?

Can deer-resistant annual flowers guarantee complete protection from deer damage, or are there additional measures that should be taken to deter deer from the garden?

How do deer-resistant annual flowers achieve their resistance, and are there specific compounds or scents that make them unappealing to deer?

Are deer-resistant annuals suitable for all climates and growing conditions, or are there certain factors to consider when selecting them for your garden?

Can you recommend deer-resistant annual flowers that not only deter deer but also add aesthetic value to the garden with their blooms and colors?

What care and maintenance practices should be followed to ensure the healthy growth and continuous blooming of deer-resistant annual flowers?

Are there specific regions or zones where deer-resistant annuals are more effective, and are there resources available to help gardeners choose the right plants for their area?

Are deer-resistant annual flowers also resistant to other common garden pests and diseases, making them a low-maintenance choice for gardeners?

Can deer-resistant annuals be used in combination with other garden plants, and are there design tips for creating aesthetically pleasing and deer-resistant garden layouts?

These FAQs should provide valuable information for gardeners looking to protect their garden from deer damage while enjoying the beauty of deer-resistant annual flowers.