Corms, Tubers, And Bulbs That Are Deer Resistant

Peonies, irises, and poppies growing in a garden
(Image credit: firina)

Everyone loves early spring blooming tulips -- deer included. If you live in an area populated by deer and want to add deer resistant flower bulbs look no further. Keep reading to learn about deer resistant flower bulbs. 

What Bulbs are Deer Resistant?

Bulbs, rhizomes, tubers and corms are all classified as geophytes. Many gardeners use them to add a splash of color among foundation plantings. Many times the bulb of choice is tulip, but if you have deer visiting your property, be forewarned: the deer love them as much as you do. 

If you want to plant bulbs that aren’t seen as food to the deer avoid the tulips and plant some of the deer resistant bulbs listed below. 

About Planting Bulbs that are Deer Resistant

Before purchasing or planting, decide which bulbs will best suit your landscape. Some bulbs need room to grow and most need rich, well-draining soil. Instead of planting a single type of bulb, plant different varieties that bloom at various times so you have a succession of blooms. 

Also, interplant the bulbs with deer resistant plants, which will steer the deer to more desirable food sources. 

Deer Resistant Spring Bulbs

Spring bulbs are those planted in the fall for spring color. While the tulips will bring the deer in for a buffet, there are plenty of other deer resistant bulbs for spring color such as daffodil, hyacinth, bluebells, Fritillaria, Star of Bethlehem, Leucojum or summer snowflake, and Colchicum. 

Allium and Eremus are also deer resistant options that can be planted either in the summer or fall. 

Deer Resistant Summer Bulbs

Allium and Eremus have already been mentioned as deer resistant bulbs which can be planted either in summer or fall, but there are plenty of other deer resistant summer geophytes to brighten up the landscape. 

Agapanthus, begonia, caladium, gladiolus, iris, peony, and poker plant are all eschewed by deer. Blazing star, bleeding heart, cannas lily, crocosmia, cranesbill, fumewort, winter aconite, and wood sorrel are additional deer resistant geophytes for the landscape.

Amy Grant

Amy Grant has been gardening for 30 years and writing for 15. A professional chef and caterer, Amy's area of expertise is culinary gardening.