Are dahlia deer resistant? Tips to protect your Dahlias?

If you live near a big park or outside the city limit where deers come by, you might wonder “Are Dahlia deer resistant?”

Deer usually don’t eat Dahlia and are considered deer safe. However, deers can seldom snack on Dahlias if they are really hungry and there is food scarcity.

Why Deers don’t like Dahlia?

Deers like sweet tender herbs like lettuce, roses, hosta, tulips, etc.

Flowers usually attract deers and thus Dahlias also attract deers. However, when it comes to Dahlia, its pungent aroma deter them. So unless they are really hungry and there is nothing more enticing to eat, they would not eat Dahlias.

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Factors that can Affect damage to Dahlia by Deers

Let us look at various factors so you may estimate the threat your dahlias face due to deers.


There are some regions like Georgia, Oklahoma, or Colorado where the deers are in high numbers. This may mean the supply of food can be short and deers can eat Dahlia as well for their energy needs.

Food Scarcity

In areas, where deers don’t get enough food, they can get into your garden and feast on your Dahlia as well.


During Spring and summer, deers are quite active. These seasons deers need more food compared to others and this means an increased threat to your Dahlias as well.

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How to protect Your Dahlias from Deers?

If you perceive a threat to your Dahlias, here are ways you can deter the deers from spoiling them.

Grow Deer resistant companion plants

The best companion plant for you to put along with Dahlia is Sage.

Deers hate the strong smell of Sage and this would mean they would not come near to your Dahlias as well.

Rose, Aster, & Geranium are other plants that you can grow along with Dahlias that can help you deter deers.

Build a Fence

In case, you have lots of deers in your area and the above companion planting method doesn’t work for you, you would need to invest in building a fence.

Do note that deers can jum high and hence you would need to erect at least 6 feet tall fence.