Are Spirea Deer Resistant?

Spirea is a woody flowering shrub found in many landscaping areas. This beautiful blooming plant is both deer and rabbit resistant. Deer prefer to nibble on plants such as Daylilies, Hostas, or English Ivy. Deer tend to stay away from poisonous, fragrant, thorny, or fuzzy plants. Spirea blooms have clusters of fuzzy flowers. 

According to Rutgers University, Spirea is listed as seldom severely damaged on their rating scale from Rarely Damaged to Frequently Severely Damaged.

If you notice that something is in fact eating your Spirea, it is most likely small insects called aphids. 

How To Keep Deer Away From Spirea?

Despite the fact that Spirea are seldom severely damaged by wandering deer, it is best to remember that no plant is truly deer resistant. If hungry enough, and if there is no better option in the garden, deer will eat anything. Spirea bloom with clusters of fuzzy flowers. Deer tend to stay away from plants with texture. Try planting other tactile plants such as thorny, prickly, or plants with hairy foliage. Deer are also deterred by scented plants. You can plant garlic, chive or mint near your Spirea plant to keep the deer away.  Deer are very skittish and can be frightened easily. Movement or sudden noises can scare deer off. Staging windchimes, scarecrows, or movable garden ornaments nearby can keep deer away from your shrubs. A more drastic option would be to put fencing around the plants or the entire garden area. 


Will Spirea Come Back After Deer Eat Them?

Spirea is a hardy plant that will grow in even poor conditions. If you find that the plant has been nibbled on by hungry deer, you need not worry. Your Spirea plant will not be harmed. A gardener will typically prune a Spirea in the fall to contain or shape the fast growing plant. If a deer nibbles on the foliage or stems of your plant, this is not a problem. A light pruning will not harm a Spirea. In fact it can promote new growth. 

Sources: Rutgers New Jersey Agricultural Experiment Station ‘Landscape Plants Rated by Deer Resistance’ 2018

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Author Chris Link - Published 10-19-2021