Do deer eat ornamental cabbage and kale?
Deer eat many vegetables, and cabbage is one of them (except ornamental cabbage). Therefore, you must consider different forms of protection for your plant by deer proofing your gardens.
Plants of the cabbage family are not deer resistant, including broccoli, cauliflower, cabbage, Brussels sprouts, and kale. Deer avoid mature asparagus plants, but deer and many other animals love the new shoots.
But in the horticultural trade, ornamental kale is the term used for types with deeply-cut, curly, frilly or ruffled leaves. Ornamental cabbage is the term used for types with broad, flat leaves that are edged in a contrasting color.
When food is scarce, deer eat just about anything, including prickly-stemmed okra and hot peppers. Vegetables that deer seem to prefer include beans, lettuce, cabbage, and cole crops such as broccoli, cauliflower, and Brussels sprouts.
Deer usually also avoid root vegetables (which require digging) and prickly vegetables such as cucumbers and squashes with hairy leaves. Cultivars with strong odors such as onions, garlic and fennel are not palatable to deer.
If you want to plant cabbage alone, you can also consider planing ornamental plants. Deer do not eat many ornamental plants, and ornamental cabbage is one of them.
Yes, they do, although not as their most favorite food source. Deer can cause undue damage to your kale plants, by eating them to the ground. Therefore, you need to stop deer from eating in your garden.
Most ornamental cabbages and kales will last through winter in most parts of the country, but they will not survive at temperatures colder than -5 degrees Fahrenheit. Fortunately, cold weather discourages many pests, so you probably won't have many insect problems. Powdery mildew can occur if weather stays damp.
While in most cases, feeding occasional, small-to-moderately-small amounts of kale to dogs won't cause any damage, some veterinarians may caution against feeding kale as a treat or as a part of a homemade diet, especially if there are underlying medical issues or concerns.
The plant with the large smooth leaves is considered the ornamental cabbage while the plant with the fringed ruffled leaves is considered the ornamental kale. They are considered an annual which means they will not grow back the following season.
What should you not feed deer?
Do not feed hay, corn, kitchen scraps, potatoes, lettuce trimmings or any animal proteins from animals rendered into feed. Deer may actually starve when fed supplemental foods during winter if they have a full belly of indigestible foods.
They love pecans, hickory nuts and beechnuts acorns in addition to acorns. A couple of favorite fruits are apples, blueberries, blackberries and persimmons. Deer occasionally enter yards to get their mouths on flowers, vegetables and ornamental trees -- quite often to the surprise of the homeowners.
The first list comprises those that are poisonous or noxious to deer. These include milkweeds such as asclepius and tweedia; euphorbias; oleanders; brugmansias and daturas; monkshood (aconitum); foxglove (digitalis); breadseed poppies (papaver somniferum), and ricinus (castor bean).
Deer love to graze on the leaves, flowers, and tender tips of hydrangeas. That said, there are strategies that hydrangea-loving gardeners like me can use to reduce deer damage. First, plant the most resistant types of hydrangeas. Next, use a barrier to keep deer away from your plants.
All varieties of marigolds are a turnoff for deer because of their strong, pungent scent. However, signet marigolds (pictured) have a lighter citrusy smell and flavor, making them popular for culinary use. Learn more about growing marigolds.
Mint (Mentha species)
Mint is another effective and natural way to repel deer. You can use mint in a couple of different ways when using it as an all-natural deer repellent. The first and possibly the most popular way to use mint as a deer repellent is to include mint plants in your garden!
Some rodents prefer to nibble on vegetables and fruits found in the garden, including cabbage. Rats, mice, squirrels and guinea pigs are all included in this cabbage-loving group.
Rabbits, deer and groundhogs also enjoy feasting on kale plants from time to time. Protect plants with a layer of floating row cover (which will also help control imported cabbageworm caterpillars) or deer netting.
Squirrels eat a variety of vegetables, and gardeners know this all too well. If a squirrels happens upon any leafy green such as lettuce, chard, kale, spinach, or arugula, they will chow down.
Fruit & Vegetables. Although deer will eat apples, carrots, cabbage, etc., their use is not recommended. They are like candy to a child tasty but of little value in providing a well-balanced and nutritious diet.