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Do Deer Eat Cosmos? – Must Read!

When it comes to deer and their voracious appetite, they love to eat plants and are constantly on the lookout for their next meal. But among all of the plants out there, some are the favorite dishes of deer—ones they simply cannot resist.

Enter the Cosmos flower!

Cosmos is a popular flowering plant and is known for its delicate flowers that come in various colors. These plants are not only easy to grow but also demand relatively less maintenance.

However, some gardeners may feel hesitant to plant Cosmos as they are unsure whether deer will eat them. Today, in this article, we are going to discuss whether deer like to eat Cosmos.

So, what are you waiting for?

Do Deer Eat Cosmos?

Deers don’t like to eat Cosmos unless they have to.

They have a strong-smelling sense and they tend to avoid any plant or flower that spreads a strong smell.

Like many other plants, the Cosmos is also the one that spreads a strong scent. With that, Cosmos plants also have a bitter taste due to the presence of certain compounds that make them unpleasant to deer.

These characteristics help to prevent the deer from eating them.

But remember!

No plant is completely deer-resistant and deer-proof plants are just a myth. The reason, why I am saying this is that, in times of extreme hunger or when no other food options are available, deer may still nibble on Cosmos plants.

But they are not typically a preferred food for them.

White Cosmos Flower
Image via Silvia Corradin

Are Cosmos Deer Resistant?

Thankfully! Cosmos are generally considered deer-resistant plants.

While no plant can be completely deer-proof, the Cosmos possesses a few characteristics that keep deer at bay. Their strong scent typically deters deer from grazing on them and their slightly rough foliage makes them less appealing to deer.

So, it is still possible that a hungry deer may eat your Cosmos but in most cases, it is seen that Cosmos are left undisturbed.

Yellow Cosmos Flower
Image via Sudipta Mondal

Are All Cosmos Deer Resistant?

There are nearly 25 different species of Cosmos found worldwide, and most of them are considered resistant to deer. Almost all varieties of Cosmos have a strong smell, making them resistant to deer.

Therefore, if you are living in an area with a high deer population, planting the Cosmos will help you to secure your garden from deer.

However, hungry deer may still eat the Cosmos flower if there are no other food sources available.

How to Protect Your Cosmos from Deer?

If you live in an area with an abundant population, some hungry deers may find your Cosmos as food.

Worry not!

There are several steps you can take to keep deer away from your plants.

These include:

1. Fencing

Installing a fence can be one of the most effective methods to keep deer away from your Cosmos.

But it is also the most expensive one!

To do this it is essential to create a fence that is roughly eight feet in height. This height might seem too much but you need to know that deer are capable of jumping over 6 to 7 ft high.

It means the common boundaries that are used to deter deer are not enough.

If a fence is not a reliable option for you, you can also try a physical barrier to protect your Cosmos. It includes placing netting or chicken wire around your plants.

Brown Deer Near a Chain Link Fence
Image via Chris F

2. Scare Tactics

It involves using visual and auditory stimuli to repel deer from approaching the Cosmos plant.

By using motion-activated sprinklers, scarecrows, and noise-making devices like wind chimes, or aluminum foil strips you can create a deterrent barrier around your garden.

However, you might need to adjust them now and then to make sure they keep working well.

3. Plant Deer Resistant Plants

Another way to protect your Cosmos from deer is to make them less attractive.

Don’t know what that means?

It means planting deer-resistant plants like lavender, sage, and marigolds around your Cosmos can create a natural barrier that deters deer from feeding on your plants.

Garden sage Purple
Image via Tohra

Deer tend to avoid these plants due to their strong scents, bitter tastes, or rough textures. Adding these plant varieties around your Cosmos not only discourages deer, but they also add an appealing look to your garden.

But as I mentioned earlier, deer-proof plants are just a myth, these plants may also not guarantee complete protection.

Related Article: Do Deer Eat Roses? How to Shoo It Away & Protect Your Flowers

4. Use Deer Repellents

You will find many commercial and homemade deer repellents available on the market. These repellents are designed to release smells that are unpleasant to deer which stops them from feeding on the plant.

While there are many options available, many people go with natural methods.

Some natural deer repellents include:

  • Sage
  • Chives
  • Soap
  • Human Hair
  • Predator Urine

Place these things in your garden or specifically around the plant you want to protect and see how they keep deer away.

It is important to regularly apply deer repellent to your plants, especially on the young ones that are more vulnerable to damage.

NOTE: While natural repellents are effective and beneficial for plant health, it is also essential to remember that these repellents do not work for all deer or in all situations. Therefore, it is better to use a combination of methods to keep deer at bay.

That’s all for today.


Cosmos plants are generally deer-resistant due to their strong scent and slightly bitter taste.

However, the characteristics of Cosmos flowers typically deter deer from grazing on them. They still nibble on the Cosmos when there are no other food sources available.

Therefore, to further protect your Cosmos plant, you can use various strategies, including:

  • Fencing
  • Scare tactics
  • Deer repellents

While these methods can help deter deer, it’s essential to remember that no single solution guarantees complete protection.

Thus, a combination of methods is often recommended.

I hope this post helps you a lot.

If you have questions about any other plants, you can mention them in the comment section below.Top of Form