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Do Deer Eat Zucchini? (All You Need to Know)

If you know zucchini, you know the difference between the cucumber and this vegetable. Some consider the cucumber as fruit and zucchini as a veggie; if you’re one of them, there is nothing wrong. You can consider them both vegetables or fruit.

When you plant these fruits or veggies in your garden, you must take the necessary steps to prevent wild animals. Particularly, if you live near the jungle, you must have a fence to deter deer and rodents.

Do deer eat zucchini?

Deer don’t eat zucchini unless they are too hungry and can’t find anything to eat. Zucchini is like the cucumber that deer dislike most. If you have this plant in your garden, you don’t need to worry about the deer. You can use either a fence around the garden or use the repellent to deter them.

Zucchini has the unpleasant smell and the taste that the deer dislike most. Deer mostly avoid these veggies because of the bitter taste and eating habits. But the truth is no veggie is 100% deer-proof which means deer can eat the zucchini if they don’t find anything else. 

So, you cannot rely on the zucchini and hope to repel the deer without using any fence. I suppose you might be wrong, and you need to prevent the deer from coming to your garden. Otherwise, the deer that you won’t like will devour the zucchini plants.

Since deer don’t like to eat zucchini, questions may go through your mind about whether the other parts of the plant are deer-proof or not. The answer remains the same. 

If you have the zucchini plants, flowers, or leaves in your garden, you must be careful about their growth and deer. You must be sure there are no deer nearby.

Otherwise, the deer will come and devour the zucchini plants. They will even mess up the entire garden and ruin the growth of the plants. If you have other plants, they will also damage or eat them. It’s the highest scenario if the deer starve for a day.


The deer cannot eat zucchini willingly. They will only go for this veggie if they don’t have anything to eat or fail to find their food nearby. 

It’s not their everyday food or the regular food item that helps them grow better, so they will not eat the zucchini and remain away from this veggie.

Zucchini leaves

Since zucchini leaves have small thorns, the deer don’t eat the zucchini leaves. Most wild animals dislike thorny leaves because of the eating hazards and hurting issues. 

If you offer the thorny deer leaves, they will not eat these leaves; instead, they will go away and try to find their edible grass.

Zucchini plants

The zucchini plants also have small thorns which can hurt the deer’s throat and body. Therefore, it is not a good thing or the ideal food for the deer to eat these plants. Thus, the deer won’t eat the zucchini plants like the other animals.

Zucchini flowers

Since the zucchini flowers have a strong smell like the garden perfume, the deer don’t eat the zucchini flowers. They keep away from the smelly leaves, flowers, and stems from finding their safe, edible food and easy to digest. 

Still, if the deer don’t find anything suitable to eat, they will devour the zucchini flowers.

Do whitetail deer eat zucchini?

Whitetail deer do not eat zucchini. Although zucchini is not a favorite of whitetail deer because of the microscopic hairs on the leaves and the low palatability of the fruit, they will eat it if none of their other favorite foods are readily accessible. 

During the winter, when other food sources are scarce, whitetail deer can often be seen near zucchini fields, where they are feeding. It mi8ght be rare, but you will find such an incident in your garden. If you live near the jungle, you will notice the fact in winter.

Do deer like to eat zucchini or zucchini plants?

Deer do not like to eat zucchini or zucchini plants. Deer do not consume zucchini in any form. On most occasions, you will witness deer avoiding zucchinis on their path. 

This is since zucchini has a strong odor that deer perceive to be exceedingly repellent. During the winter, though, deer may be seen around zucchini plants during times of scarcity, so keep an eye out for them.

Are zucchini plants deer resistant?

Zucchini plants are deer resistant. Deer are not fond of zucchini. However, if the conditions are ideal, they will consume the entire plant, including the roots, until it is destroyed. 

Deer are not fond of veggies that have strong odors or have thorns or spiky foliage since they like plants which are sweet in taste. Because of this, zucchini possess a strong deer resistance. 

How to keep deer from eating zucchini plants?

Although the deer won’t eat the zucchini plants, you cannot expect it to repel or keep away the deer. You must take proper steps and follow the essential tips to keep deer from eating your zucchini plants. 

Especially when you have small zucchini plants, you must use the repellent and deter the deer.

Let’s follow some tips and methods to keep deer from eating zucchini plants. You can follow all of them or find the suitable one according to your needs. 

Fence Around the Garden

The best method and safest way to keep away deer from eating your zucchini are to fence around the garden. Only a strong fence can ensure the best deer-resistant garden and make the place safe to plant different veggies and flowers. 

Although the process of fencing would be tiresome, you should take the proper steps and create the string fence.

You can use both the electric cables and the bamboo in fencing. But the first one would be stronger than the bamboo fencing because of its durability and strength. 

If your fence around the garden uses an electric cable, it will last for years, and deer won’t be able to penetrate the fence.

Tenax 1A120390 Premium, 7.5' x 330', Black

Deer-repellent plants

Some plants are naturally deer-resistant, like the cucumber, ginger, cinnamon, or anything that spreads a solid or pungent smell in the air. You can select a few of them and plant them around the garden to make the place deer resistant. 

It might seem a bit tiresome and lengthy, but it’s worth it.

If you can plant the deer-repellent plants, they will grow slowly. They might take a month to spread the smell and deter the deer from the surroundings. You will enjoy the smell and your veggies and can easily protect them from the deer. 

Thus, planting deer-repellent plants would be an excellent choice for you.

Spray with Repellent

The first two methods are for the long-time solution, but you can use instant repellent to make it easier. In that case, you need to buy the required sprayer from the pest shop that is 100% deer-resistant. 

After getting the sprayer, you can start spraying all over the garden to deter the deer.

When you spray around the garden, it will spread the smell. This smell will deter the deer from the surrounding since it will be pungent and strong enough that the deer will fail to bear. As a result, the deer will keep away from eating zucchini plants.

Harris Deer Repellent, Long Lasting Ready to Use Plant Safe Formula, 128oz

Spray With Home Ingredients

Spraying with the pest controller or pesticides is not a safe way or not suitable for the garden either. You can replace the pest controller with the home ingredients by making a spray with the cuisines. 

You can use the onion, ginger, and other home ingredients like vinegar to create this spray.

You need to boil some fresh water and add the vinegar. Then, you can put some zinger or onion and make a strong mixture. You can spray it around the garden to deter the deer from the surroundings. It will be an effective way to prevent the deer.

Is zucchini good for deer?

Zucchini is not suitable for deer. Deer may benefit from eating zucchini in little quantities because of its high concentration of vitamins, minerals, and other nutritional ingredients. On the other hand, some factors indicate that it can be excessively dangerous in the long run.

Zucchini is high in fiber, and deer have a low digestive capacity for cellulose (cellulose digestibility). It has a highly low-calorie count.

Besides, the chemical pesticides used in cultivating zucchini are harmful to deer’s health. Also, zucchini contains a high concentration of the cucurbitacin compound and can be toxic to deer. Because it’s a low-protein vegetable, it can generate only a little benefit to deer.

Final thoughts

Although deer don’t eat zucchini, this plant is not deer-proof. You need to be sure about the deer and take the necessary steps to prevent deer. Otherwise, they will devour the zucchini veggie if they don’t find anything else. You can grow some deer-resistant plants in your garden to deter deer.