This includes plants with a bitter taste, strong scent or tough, prickly, thorny or rough leaf or stem texture.

We’ve put together a list of our 10 favorites for you.

1. Russian Sage

Graceful spires and pretty lavender-blue flowers.


A member of the mint family (who knew?) that deer find offensive but we find to be fragrant, pretty and versatile.

3. Salvia

Also known as sage, salvia comes in an amazing variety of colors and its tubular flower shape attracts butterflies and hummingbirds.


Large, sturdy white blooms with bright yellow butterfly-friendly centers. The coarse, leathery leaves deter deer.


A natural deer and mosquito repellant. Plus the loose lavender-blue spikes look striking over its silvery-green mounds.

6. Astilbe

Showy but strong red, pink and white flowers with glossy fern-like foliage. Do well in light to moderate shade.

7. Coneflower

Also known as echinacea, these colorful, sturdy bloomers are popular with the bees. Their seeds attract goldfinches and chickadees.


Low-maintenance, long-lasting flowers that can be encouraged with deadheading. Colorful daisy-like blooms attract bees.

9. Rudbeckia

Includes the popular black-eyed Susan. Very drought-resistant member of the sunflower family in bright yellow or golden summer hues.


Prolific early-spring bloomer in understated but lovely white, green, pink, purple and cream. A scene-stealer deer tend to overlook.