Deer Resistant Gardens | Fall Planted Bulbs | Garden Design | Tips & Tricks

7 Deer Resistant Combinations for Spring Blooms


You’ve waited all winter and part of spring to see the bulbs you planted blooming. They’re up, they have leaves, stems, and a bud—but then Bambi and her crew shows up and decide your tulips look like a good afternoon snack – all that waiting and hard work for nothing but disappointment. It’s a story as old as time, a gardener plants flowers or vegetables in their garden, a hungry animal comes to feast, leaving the gardener with an empty harvest and heart.

Your garden doesn’t have to be a victim to hungry deer eating your flowers! You may think you are limited to only daffodils blooming in spring if you have a deer population the size of Texas in your yard. That is not the case—there are plenty of choices for spring-blooming flowers that deer say no to. For garden inspiration that is safe from hungry deer continue reading for some fun deer resistant planting combinations.

7 Deer Resistant Planting Combinations

Fondant Hyacinths and Muscari

Blue Grape Hyacinths + Fondant Hyacinths

The giant soft pink blooms of Fondant Hyacinths really make the true-blue blooms of the Blue Grape Hyacinths stand out. While both of these bulbs have the word hyacinth in the name they are different bulbs. Grape Hyacinths grow low to the ground about 4-6” tall and act as a ground cover. Fondant Hyacinths while still shorter than most other flowers grow 8-12” tall. This 8-12″ height makes them a perfect front of the border plant. Both bulbs are fragrant and this duo makes for a delightful pink and blue combination.

Orange Fritillaria and Tazetta Daffodils

Aurora Orange Fritillaria + Geranium Tazetta Daffodil

One of the most known deer-resistant flowers is daffodils. One of the lesser-known deer-resistant bulbs in spring is the fritillaria. Fritillaria blooms have a unique and almost tropical appearance even though they are not a tropical plant. This pairing of orange fritillaria and white/orange geranium tazetta daffodils is one of the best defenses against deer in your garden. Deer stay away from daffodils due to their toxic leaves, bulbs, and flowers. Fritillaria omits a skunky odor that tricks deer and squirrels into thinking a skunk is present.

Hyacinths and Grecian Windflower

Blue Jacket Hyacinth + Grecian Windflower

The only ones signing the blues to this combination will be the deer in your garden. Both Blue Jacket Hyacinths and Grecian Windflower are deer resistant and bloom with true blue blooms! Grecian Windflower grows low to the ground only about 4” tall and makes a great partner for the 8-12” tall Blue Jacket Hyacinths. If you like blue in the garden this is a must-have plant combination.

Hyacinths and Muscari

White Grape Hyacinths + Blue Star Hyacinths + White Hyacinths

Just like the famous Delft Blue Art in Holland, this combination combines true blue with white. Fragrant hyacinths and grape hyacinths will bloom with pale blue and white blooms. Plant this combination under small trees like crabapples, dogwoods, redbuds, and magnolias for white and blue tree shoes.

Daffodils, Hyacinths and Muscari

Hungarian Rhapsody Daffodil + Gypsy Queen Hyacinth + Blue Grape Hyacinths 

This combination is a real eye-opener! The peach blooms of Hungarian Rhapsody Daffodil and Gypsy Queen Hyacinth tower above the bright blue blooms of the grape hyacinths. If you like jazz and wanted to add some to your garden this combination of peach and blue is sure to jazz it up!

Miniature Daffodils and Crocus

Rapture Miniature Daffodils + Mixed Crocus 

You can never go wrong with 2 classic spring flowers in the same garden! Mixed Crocus begins blooming early in the season which is always a welcome sight. Early daffodils like Rapture Miniature Daffodils bloom in accordance with the mixed crocus for a delightful combination. This combination works well in a naturalized spot such as a wooded area but could also be planted in your lawn.

Daffodils and Hyacinths

Delft Blue Hyacinths + Dutch Master Daffodils

Deer won’t know what to do when they see this classic spring combination. Looking at a color wheel you will notice that yellow and blue are complementary colors, a combination that never fails. Fragrant blue hyacinths planted in the foreground of classic Dutch Master Daffodils is a timeless garden combination.

Don’t let deer spoil your garden party again! With the flower combinations listed above, you can have a variety of blooms in early and mid-spring that will keep the deer away. Late spring blooming bulbs that can also be added to these combinations include allium, dutch iris, peonies, and bearded iris. If the deer population is really out of control or you desperately want tulips in your yard you might want to consider using a repellant such as Liquid Fence to protect your flowers. Happy planting!

Need Gardening Help?

If you need any help with gardening or if you have plant-related questions or concerns, feel free to reach out to Jenny San Filippo. She can provide you with the knowledge and tools needed to succeed with your next project!

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