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Is Liatris Deer Resistant? [Benefits, Companionship & More]

Planting Liatris in your garden can help you secure your backyard produce and other ornamentals, but is Liatris really a proper deer-resistant plant?

Generally, chemically fortified Liatris is a deer-resistant plant, but only if you plant it with other similar deer-deterring garden companions. If you dare to plant Liatris, maintain at least 8-12 inches distance between the plants.

Learn the ways to plant Liatris and how you can employ its deer-deterring powers in a sustainable way!

What Is Liatris? [Overview & Facts]

Blazing Stars/ Gay Feathers (Liatris species) is an herbaceous perennial exclusively native to Central and Eastern North America.  

Liatris hails from the plant family Asteraceae and is hardy from USDA zones 3-9.

The most noticeable feature of Liatris is the purplish-magenta, pink, or white flowers that bloom on a tall flowering spike, reaching 2-6 feet tall.

Image illustrates the growth habit of Liatris
Liatris is a summer-blooming perennial with extensive flowering periods.

But, each flower in the spike is a capitulum or head, comprising many small flowers, as in Sunflowers, Daisies, and Marigolds.

Liatris has an extensive blooming period, through July to September or until November (mid-summer to early or up to late fall).  

Gardening Benefits Of Liatris

Not only can Liatris elevate the decor of your summer and garden, but it also has certain advantages over some common-seasonal ornamentals.

  • Liatris are easy to grow and can comply with the growing conditions of other summer-blooming ornamental flowers.
  • Blooms of Liatris are nectar-rich. Hence, it is a food hub for pollinators like bees, butterflies, and hummingbird moths.
  • The plant is a drought-tolerant that can withstand hot, dry summers and thrive in limited watering.
Image illustrates the pollinators of Liatris plant
Nectar-rich flowers of Liatris can attract a number of beneficial pollinators in your garden.
  • With a blooming period of 12-24 weeks and persistent flowers, they offer a long-lasting decor to your garden.
  • Additionally, you can use Litaris as a border, prairie, or side-walk plant, thanks to its height and radiant blooms.

Do Deer Eat Liatris?

There are not many garden critters that can dare to eat Liatris. But, a few caterpillar species feed on their leaves as pests.

Chemical investigations reveal that Liatris contains irritating chemical compounds that herbivores such as deer, squirrels, rabbits, groundhogs, and voles find irritating.

However, the herbivore-deterring ability of Liatris depends on the herbivores and the individual plant.

Herbivores, like deer, can lavish on Liatris if they are hungry or after they wake from winter sleep.

Also, Deer can also eat Liatris if they cannot find other food sources.

Additionally, parts of the Liatris plant contain a mix of volatile oils that ooze if you damage or trample the plant.

Further, deer can likely nibble the parts of your Liatris plant, causing inevitable damage, but they won’t return for the bitter taste again. 

Hence, planting Liatris with other deer-deterrent annuals and perennials in your garden is the only way to keep deer at bay.

Deer Resistant Plants That Can Be Planted Alongside Liatris

You can grow Liatris with other summer-blooming and deer-resistant ornamentals to safeguard your garden from the pesky herbivores.

Astilbe, Purple Asters, Ox-Eye Sunflowers, Coneflowers, Butterfly Weeds, Daylilies, Basils, Yarrows, and Foxgloves are some plants that you can plant alongside Liatris to discourage deer from your backyard. 

Image illustrates companion plants of Liatris
Liatris can grow well beside a number of other deer-resistant plants.

However, you must also learn some proper planting techniques to grow Liatris with its garden companions.

  • Use Liatris as a first line of defense against the herbivores by planting them in the first row around other plants.
  • Maintain a distance of at least 8-12 inches between the plants so that they don’t interfere with surrounding companions.
  • Additionally, grow other plants with the same growth rate and height as that of Liatris to encourage elegant focal beauty. 

From Editorial Team


There is no 100% assurance that Liatris is a deer-resistant plant, but you can complement its deterrent powers by planting it alongside other deer-resistant annuals and perennials.

You can also use predator urine around your garden alongside Liatris to fortify your garden and discourage other herbivores.