Do Deer Eat Zinnia? (No, here’s why)

In most gardens, Deer are notorious for nibbling Zinnias. Does that mean the plant is a delicious snack for the animal? Should you be concerned with your Zinnias outside?

Do Deer eat Zinnia? Here’s a quick answer for you:

Deer do not eat Zinnias. The dark-green foliage of Zinnias is hairy and contains prominent veins. The flowers come in radiant colors, yellow, red, orange, green, except blue. However, keep in mind that Deer can eat ‘virtually’ any flower if they’re extremely hungry and are unable to find their favorite snacks – Geraniums, Sunflowers, etc.

These flowers, which germinate within 5 to 7 days, are the least desirable plants for the Deer. They also enjoy the sweet, sour taste of the fruit, but don’t eat the plant itself. 

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Fortunately, you can keep deer away by planting repellents or using wormers.

Unlike rabbits and other small mammals, deer don’t enjoy the flowers. Instead, they prefer open-pollinated species. 

Aside from Zinnias, Deer don’t fancy hydrangeas, bearded irises, sages, marigolds, peonies, and tulips.

These flowers have a sweet smell that will repel deer, which may eat them for their seeds in the absence of a nutritious food source.

While deer don’t usually bother zinnia flowers, the leaves and stems can be eaten by them. 

However, if deer are particularly hungry, they are likely to attack zinnias. They will only harm mature plants, so it’s best to start seeds 6 to 8 weeks before the last frost. The zinnia plants should be planted at least 8 weeks before the last frost. They can also be started indoors, but they should not be planted in the garden until the first frost.

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Zinnias are Pest-Repellents

Zinnias have many benefits. Their flowers are highly resistant to deer nibbling, and they also resist pests like Aphids. The prickly center of Zinnias makes them less attractive to deer.

These plants also don’t die off easily when they are attacked by deer, so there’s no reason to worry if you grow them in your yard.

The blooms of zinnias might be attractive to deer, and they can endure summer heat and drought without any supplemental water. The plant isn’t poisonous, but deer do like the foliage and buds. So if you’re growing zinnias, you should protect them from these creatures.  

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While deer aren’t known to actually eat zinnias, they will probably try to eat them if they are hungry. These animals can’t resist the smell of zinnias, so they’re not the best candidates for repellents. As far as the odor of zinnias is concerned, it will probably suffocate the deer.

If your garden is in a high-deer area, you should consider growing zinnias in this area.  

It is non-toxic to Horses and is highly resistant to the same pesticides. Essentially, Zinnias are also a good option for landscaping. You can get a variety of colors and unique shapes from zinnias.

Zinnia flowers are deer-resistant plants. It is not deer-proof, but it is highly deer-resistant.

Even if you live in an area with a large number of fawns, you can grow zinnias in your garden. They are non-toxic to cats and dogs as well. So, don’t worry if you have a high deer population.

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What Animals Eat Zinnia Plants?


Rabbits can destroy your zinnia plants. While you may not see them as often as other animals, they are very destructive and can damage your entire garden.

Rabbits will gnaw through the leaves and eat a good portion of them. If you want to prevent Rabbits from eating your zinnias, you should try to trap them with a blood meal or powdered fox urine.


Leafrollers can also attack your zinnias. Their small bodies and thin, copper wings make them hard to identify. They can also be a problem if they get out of control.

They will consume the flower buds and defoliate your plants and may even destroy the entire plant.

Both types of these pests can damage your zinnia plants. If you are worried about your garden being attacked by either one of these creatures, you can spray neem oil on the zinnias. This will kill any eggs they lay and prevent infestation.


Aphids are another common pest that can damage your Zinnias. These pests prefer the young buds of zinnia plants. Insect sprays and odor repellents can also be effective to keep these pests away.

The most common aphids that attack zinnias are cutworms, armyworms, and leafrollers. 

These insects eat the leaves of zinnias and can also cause problems if they contaminate other plants in your garden. The best way to prevent aphids is to keep the foliage of zinnia plants dry. In addition, you can spray a solution of 70% alcohol to kill the aphids and other pests.

These natural solutions are recommended if your infestation is severe. Insects do not eat the leaves of zinnias, but they do eat the young bud.

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Insects are commonplace when it comes to Zinnias. These pests usually infest stalks of herbaceous plants. You need to keep an eye out for these insects because the symptoms are not so obvious until it is too late to save the plant.

Once you notice an infestation, you should take action quickly. Fortunately, zinnias are deer-resistant, but they can still be eaten by wildlife.


Caterpillars can both damage zinnia leaf. They also eat zinnias, but they generally don’t cause damage to your garden. It is best to spray your zinnias with neem oil to repel them.

Ants are one of the few animals that do not usually infest zinnias. However, if you’re worried about them, you can apply neem oil to the plant to prevent their eggs from hatching. During the summer, if you can keep these pests away, your zinnias will be happy.  


Caterpillars are another common insect that feeds on zinnia. These insects live on pea plants and zinnias. Aster leafhoppers can cause damage to zinnia leaves. They feed on the sap, and if you have a zinnia plant, you can put a protective barrier around it to prevent them from eating your flowers.

While aphids are the main enemy of zinnia plants, there are many other species of animals that eat this plant.

The most common insect that eats zinnia leaves are earwigs, which are tiny and resemble black beans. They are coppery red/brown in color, and aphids usually feed on decomposed plant material.

While slugs are more common in the spring and summer, snails are the enemy of zinnias.

They lay eggs in the leaves of plants and eat the sap. It is important to keep aphids at bay by removing their breeding grounds and limiting their numbers. You can trap slugs by placing a piece of rolled newspaper in their nests.

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Deer are notorious for nibbling on garden plants, and zinnias are no exception. In this blog, explore effective strategies to protect your zinnias from hungry deer. From natural deterrents to garden design tips, discover practical solutions to keep your zinnias thriving and untouched. Learn about deer-resistant zinnia varieties and gain insights into creating a deer-resistant garden. Don’t let deer spoil your floral haven; read on to safeguard your zinnias and maintain a flourishing garden oasis.


Aphids, mites, and birds are a common problem, but there are also several other types of zinnia that repel all these pests.

While these insects are easily visible, others can harm the plant.

The common zinnia is a sun-loving plant that grows low and spreads through a shady area. Despite its small size, it can add color to your garden.

Read Also:- Do Deer Eat Geraniums? (Yes… 11 Ways to Stop Deer)


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