Best shrub for dog/deer/beauty

PamelaAnnMay 24, 2014

I'm looking for a few shrubs to plant in front of my home that will be: nontoxic for my dog; resistant to deers; pretty in color;
Also would like a shrub that will grow full with time and can withstand 6+ hours of direct sunlight.

Azaleas and Rhododendrins are out as they are toxic to dogs.

Any thoughts, gardeners?

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A great many (in fact, most) plants are toxic to pets and humans if they eat them but most pets would rather eat their own food than plants. Adult dogs will leave plants alone and if you train puppies to not chew plants, you should be able to eliminate that factor completely. FWIW, there is a huge population of dog-owning gardeners who don't think twice about what plants to include in their gardens because they have trained their pets to stay away from them. Same thing with small kids.

Avoiding deer is another issue and that should be the determining factor on what you choose to include.

    Bookmark   May 25, 2014 at 1:37PM
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There should be fact sheets on the web for deer resistance in your state. They're merely guides since nothing is foolproof in the absence of their natural food or if your yard has become familiar to them as a source of an easy meal.

Anything with highly scented foliage seems to be all around ignored - nepetas, Russian Sage; same for plants with fuzzy foliage; conifers with short, spikey needles; barberry which is considered an invasive in some places.

In the early spring, my ninebarks can be a bit browsed, but they can outpace any nibbling. Have also never touched potentilla fruticosa.

    Bookmark   May 25, 2014 at 1:54PM
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laceyvail(6A, WV)

Deer do not eat magnolias or spirea and have little interest in most viburnums, except V. dentatums. On the other hand, starving deer will eat anything, even if it kills them.

    Bookmark   May 27, 2014 at 6:35AM
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Dave in NoVA • 7a • Northern VA

You don't mention the dimensions of the shrub besides 'full with time'. Not sure what that means.

At what height and width are you able to maintain them?

    Bookmark   May 27, 2014 at 12:23PM
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jcalhoun(8b Mobile County AL)

Witchazel might work.

    Bookmark   June 9, 2014 at 12:39AM
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