Do Deer Like To Eat Lettuce?

Do Deer Like To Eat Lettuce?

Yes, deer love lettuce, and might devour all of the lettuce you planted.  Deer like lettuce because its a soft leafy plant with a high water content.  Lettuce is just one of the vegetables that are commonly found in gardens and it often becomes one of the many plants that deer love to eat during the summer

Are you planning to plant some lettuce in your garden? Before you do, you might want to consider a few things. If you're wondering whether deer eat lettuce or not, the answer is yes. In fact, lettuce is a highly preferred food of deer. These hungry creatures can consume up to 10 pounds of food in a day, so it's crucial to take precautions to keep your garden safe. In this post, we'll be discussing in detail about the eating habits of deer and how to stop them from feasting on your lettuce plants. So, let's dig in!

Deer, like many other animals, are browsing creatures and will eat almost anything they come across if they're hungry enough. They're especially fond of leafy greens that are well-watered, which makes lettuce a top meal choice for them. Your lettuce is most susceptible to deer when there are fewer more preferred food sources around and especially when the plants are young and tender. It's important to keep in mind these eating habits when designing and protecting your garden from deer damage.

Why Do Deer Like Lettuce?

Deer have a varied diet, but they tend to be attracted to young, fresh, and tender plants. Lettuce, especially when it's raw and crispy, is exactly the kind of food they enjoy. Lettuce contains a high amount of water compounds, which helps deer stay hydrated during summertime. Moreover, lettuce is a good source of vitamins A and C, potassium, and fiber, making it even more desirable for these herbivorous animals. Unfortunately, if you have lettuce plants in your garden and live in a deer-infested area, they may become a favorite meal.

Animals Can Cause Significant Damage To Your Garden

When it comes to deer and gardens, the damage caused by these creatures can be substantial. Not only will they devour your lettuce, but they can also damage your plants by rubbing their antlers on them, breaking branches, and damaging tree bark. Furthermore, their hooves can trample your plants and gardens, making them unsightly and difficult to manage. So, it is important to take measures to protect your garden from deer to avoid all of the damage they can cause.

How to Keep Deer Out of Your Garden

Protecting your garden from deer is crucial if you want to enjoy a bountiful harvest. Lettuce, in particular, is one of the veggies that deer love to munch on. The damage that these herbivores can cause is immense. Hoof prints, droppings, trampled plants, and torn leaves are some signs that deer have been in your garden. While physical barriers like fences and covers can be effective deer deterrents, repellents and scare tactics can also work well. Planting vegetables that deer don't like and using herbicides and plants with a foul taste are other ways to protect your garden.

Physical barriers

One of the most effective ways to protect your lettuce garden from deer is by using physical barriers. Fences, plastic netting, floating row covers, and chicken wire are some of the popular options. These barriers can effectively keep deer out of your garden. You can also use lightweight polypropylene fencing, which is almost invisible, or electric fencing, which works well for small gardens without clearance on the inside of the fencing. Double fencing, with an inner fence about 3 to 5 feet from the outer fence, is also effective since deer can't jump wide fences. These physical barriers can help you safeguard your lettuce garden from hungry deer.


Repellents are a common strategy to deter deer from eating your lettuce. Most deer repellents use strong smells, such as garlic and hot peppers, that deer don't like. These smells help mask the scent of your lettuce and make it less attractive to deer. When using repellents, it's important to follow instructions carefully and avoid using homemade mixes that could make your lettuce inedible. Repellents work best on young lettuces, so apply them diligently, especially after it rains. A combination of physical barriers and repellents can effectively reduce the damage caused by deer in your garden.

Designing your garden to deter deer

Designing your garden to deter deer can also be a natural way to keep them away. Planting deer-resistant plants like foxglove, lavender, and marigold can be helpful. You can also interplant your vegetable garden with herbs like rosemary, thyme, and sage. These herbs not only add flavor to your meals but also deter deer with their strong scent. Adding fountains or water features can also discourage deer from visiting your garden as they don't like to be around water sources. Incorporating landscaping elements like gravel paths or large rocks can also make it difficult for deer to enter and navigate through your garden.

Chemical repellents vs mechanical repellents

When it comes to keeping deer away from your garden, there are two main types of repellents: chemical and mechanical. Chemical repellents are typically more effective and can be found in a wide range of products on the market. They work by emitting an odor or taste that deer find unpleasant. Mechanical repellents, such as motion-activated sprinkler systems or ultrasonic devices, are also available but are generally considered less effective. Ultimately, it is up to the individual gardener to choose the best method for their specific needs and budget.

Recommended repellents and their effectiveness

When it comes to keeping deer away from your lettuce, there are a variety of repellents you can use. Some of the most effective include commercial deer repellents that emit an unpleasant odor, such as Liquid Fence or Deer Off. Additionally, using homemade repellents, such as a mixture of garlic and egg, can also be helpful. Keep in mind that repellents may not guarantee that deer won't get into your garden, but they can certainly discourage them. Just be sure to follow instructions carefully and apply them diligently, especially after it rains.

This article was updated on June 18, 2023