Are Hydrangeas Deer Resistant?
Flowers make our surroundings eye-catchy and relaxing while providing food for the insects. Without them, our planet will become hotter and drier, for they serve as pipelines to the atmosphere. Considering their huge contribution to our environment, people with green thumb grow them in their garden or backyard. There are many varieties, but one of the favorites is the hydrangeas. However, one of the most looked up questions on the internet is: “Are hydrangeas deer resistant?” Before we answer that question, let’s know more about the hydrangeas.
Basic Knowledge About Hydrangeas
Hydrangeas take part in the kingdom of plants. They are so beautiful that they are even celebrated annually every 5th of January. They are considered Shrubs or Climbing plants with round and flat flowering heads with clusters of small florets. There are around 70 to 75 species of them that can grow up to 1 to 3 meters tall. Some grow up to 30 meters tall.
Based on studies, the color of the Hydrangeas in your garden may differ with your soil's acidity or alkalinity. So, if your garden's soil is acidic, it will produce Blue flowers. If it has a high level of alkaline, you will see pink or purple florets, while if it's neutral, you can expect pale cream growing florets.
The 5 Types of Hydrangeas
The species of hydrangeas can be identified into five types:
- Bigleaf Hydrangeas - can be found mostly in the United States. It goes with three names. Some call them Hortensia, French hydrangeas, or the Florist's hydrangeas. Under this type are:
Mophead Hydrangeas - the most popular big leaf hydrangea with large flower heads that are purple, blue and pink
Lacecap Hydrangeas – identical to Mophead but except bloom shape.
Mountain Hydrangeas - though they are least common, they can survive harsh winters, climates, and hard places.
- Panicle Hydrangeas - are easy to identify among other hydrangeas. They are large blooms with cone shape flower heads. They bloom in white and later on turn into pink.
- Smooth Hydrangeas - are wild shrubs that can withstand hotter climates and are native to the United States. Its leaves are thin and floppier than Mophead, and they have this distinctive heart shape.
- Oakleaf Hydrangeas - are the only type of hydrangeas that change leaves color during fall, from orange to red, then mahogany. It was named Oakleaf for its leaves resembles those of the Red Oak.
- Climbing Hydrangeas or Petiolaris - are mostly found in areas of Asia, specifically in Korea, Siberia, and Japan. They are very popular because of their aberrant upward structure and large blooms.
Knowing Based on Facts
Now going back to the question, are hydrangeas deer resistant? The answer is a dismaying NO to all gardeners and landscapers. Hydrangeas are not the usual favorite, but considering the growing population of deer and wild bushfires happening around the world and not to mention the extremely cold winter months, surviving deer can’t help but wander in gardens to feed on whatever plant they can see. The good news is, there are varieties of hydrangeas that are low risk in being snack by deer, the Oakleaf Hydrangea, and Climbing Hydrangea.
Let’s Find the Solution
But what can frustrated gardeners do to their hydrangeas to become resistible to deer? Are hydrangeas deer resistant is a question that many gardening elders and landscapers want to answer. Of course, no gardener wants to see his/her beautiful plants being chewed by a deer.
Though it might be hard to make a deer-proof plant, our first defense could be fences and burlaps. This could take much of someone's time and effort in building, but it sure does help. The second solution could be in fallen leaves. Covering the stalks and leaving small holes can help not just to protect the plant from hungry deer but also to reduce the evaporation on the ground during fall and control weeds.
During winter, deer munches on branches. Covering the trunk of the tree where Hydrangea climbs can provide extra protection to the plant for deer likes to munch on barks too. The fourth solution can be in a store. You can buy a deer repellent spray that will be effective if you could apply it every 30 days. Spraying this repellent on leaves and branches would be the easiest way to prevent deer from chewing it off. If your plants are young and small in the state, you can make a wire cage around them.
Keep in mind that covering tree's or plant's trunk with duct tape won't help solve the problem. You will suffocate it. Yes, the bark won't be eaten, but the tape will affect the growth and health of the plant.
What to Remember?
Before you buy hydrangeas, don't forget they also need protection during winter, not just from deer but especially when the temperature drops to single a digit. They may be small at first, but they grow larger and larger. They need a sturdy frame with insulation. You can also add leaves around them. They will help prevent plants from freezing. They can then be used to refresh the leaf insulation until winter is over. Plastic is never an option for its insulation.
In some places, they use Styrofoam to protect the plant from severe freezing and also to prevent snow from melting and saturating the leaves, which would then freeze. The most unusual way to protect it is by flattening the whole hydrangea beneath sheets of cardboards and brick then cover with insulation cloth.
Now that we have provided you solid and clear answers about are hydrangeas deer resistant, you can focus on what is best for your plants. Growing these wonderful plants should always bring you joy and relaxation. You can now stop worrying about: “Are hydrangeas deer-resistant?” You now have the knowledge to keep them safe, so keep planting these beautiful blossoms!
November 3, 2020
by: Annette Cockerham
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