ground hog standing in field
Image by April King

Groundhogs often consume many garden plants

Groundhog Resistant Plants

Groundhogs can cause real problems for home vegetable and flower gardeners. They eat almost any plant material and are especially fond of tomatoes. 

Annuals fill the garden with flowers and fragrance from early spring until fall's first frost. Unfortunately, the vivid, pleasantly scented blooms tend to draw the attention of groundhogs and other wildlife. Though each creature tends to be put off by different plants, including snapdragons, wax begonias, annual poppies, garden pinks, and floss flowers in the garden's design will help to deter most animal pests.

Perennials return each year and add a splash of color to the landscape. To keep unwanted browsers at bay, consider placing butterfly bush, peony, foxglove and coreopsis around the perimeter of the yard or garden. In theory, should a wandering wood chuck happen upon these unpopular plants, they will turn up their nose and wonder away in search of more appealing fare, rather than venturing closer to the house.

So while groundhogs will consume a wide variety of plants, the ones listed below are less likely to be their dinner.

Use this link to find a printable PDF of Groundhog Resistant Plants.

Please note that plants marked with ** can sometimes become invasive, use cautiously.

BUTTERFLY AND HUMMINGBIRD GARDEN

Blanket Flower (Gaillardia pulchella)

Butterfly Weed (Asclepias tuberosa)

Coneflower (Rudbeckia sp.)

Delphinium (Delphinium sp.)

Fennel (Foeniculum vulgare)

Fountain Grass (Pennisetum alopecuroides)

Lavender (Lavandula sp.)

Ornamental Onion (Allium schoenopra-sum)

Sedum (Sedum sp.)

Snapdragon (Antirrhinum majus)

Soapwort (Saponaria officinalis)

Threadleaf Coreopsis (Coreopsis verticil-lata)

Yarrow (Achillea sp.)

CUT FLOWER GARDEN

Baby’s Breath (Gypsophila paniculata)

Blanket Flower (Gaillardia pulchella)

Butterfly Weed (Asclepias tuberosa)

Daffodil (Narcissus sp.)

Delphinium (Delphinium sp.)

Dianthus (Dianthus sp.)

Foxglove (Digitalis sp.)

Heather (Calluna sp.)

Iris (Iris sp.)

Lavender (Lavandula sp.)

Peony (Paeonia sp.)

Snapdragon (Antirrhinum majus)

Threadleaf Coreopsis (Coreopsis verticil-lata)

Windflower (Anemone blanda)

Yarrow (Achillea sp.)

DRY BORDERS

Baby’s Breath (Gypsophila paniculata)

Blanket Flower (Gaillardia pulchella)

Butterfly Weed (Asclepias tuberosa)

Daylily cv.(Hemerocallis ‘Stella d’Oro’)

Fennel (Foeniculum vulgare)

Fountain Grass (Pennisetum alopecuroides)

Lamb’s Ears (Stachys byzantina)

Lavender (Lavandula sp.)

Lemon Balm (Melissa officinalis)

Russian Sage (Perovskia atriplicifolia)

Sedum (Sedum sp.)

Soapwort (Saponaria officinalis)

Sweet Alyssum (Lobularia maritima)

Threadleaf Coreopsis (Coreopsis verticil-lata)

Wormwood (Artemisia sp.)

HERB GARDEN

Catmint (Nepeta catarina)

Chives (Allium schoenoprasum)

Fennel (Foeniculum vulgare)

Feverfew (Chrysanthemum parthenium)

Garlic Chives (Allium tuberosum)

Geranium, Citronella (Pelargonium citro-sum)

Lavender (Lavandula sp.)

Lemon Balm (Melissa officinalis)

Thyme (Thymus sp.)

Wormwood (Artemisia sp.)

LIGHT SHADE GARDEN

Amsonia (Amsonia tabernaemontana)

Daffodil (Narcissus sp.)

Fountain Grass (Pennisetum alopecuroides)

Foxglove (Digitalis sp.)

Garlic Chives (Allium tuberosum)

Geranium, Citronella (Pelargonium citro-sum)

Heuchera (Heuchera americana)

Iris (Iris sp.)

Plumbago (Ceratostigma plumbaginoides)

Tansy (Tanacetum vulgare)

Windflower (Anemone blanda)

ROCKY AREA GARDEN

Fountain Grass (Pennisetum alopecuroides)

Heuchera (Heuchera americana)

Plumbago (Ceratostigma plumbaginoides)

Sundrops (Oenothera tetragona)

Sweet Alyssum (Lobularia maritima)

Threadleaf Coreopsis (Coreopsis verticil-lata)

SHADY ENTRY GARDEN

Astilbe (Astilbe sp.)

Bleeding Heart (Dicentra spectabilis)

Christmas Fern (Polystichum acrostichoides)

Foxglove (Digitalis sp.)

Fringed Bleeding-heart (Dicentra eximia)

Hay-scented Fern (Dennstaedtia puncti-lobula)**

Hellebore (Helleborus sp.)

Lily-of-the-Valley (Convallaria majalis)

Monkshood (Aconitum sp.)

Sweet Woodruff (Galium odoratum)

Turtlehead (Chelone sp.)

Wild Ginger (Asarum candense)

SUNNY ENTRY GARDEN

Ageratum (Ageratum houstonianum)

Amsonia (Amsonia tabernaemontana)

Baby’s Breath (Gypsophila paniculata)

Blue Fescue (Festuca ovina var. glauca)

Delphinium (Delphinium sp.)

Dianthus (Dianthus sp.)

Feverfew (Chrysanthemum parthenium)

Flowering Tobacco (Nicotiana alata)

Fountain Grass (Pennisetum alopecuroides)

Foxglove (Digitalis sp.)

Geranium, Citronella (Pelargonium citro-sum)

Heather (Calluna sp.)

Heuchera (Heuchera americana)

Lamb’s Ears (Stachys byzantina)

Lavender (Lavandula sp.)

Lemon Balm (Melissa officinalis)

Maiden Grass (Miscanthus sinensis)

Montbretia (Crocosmia hybrids)

Ornamental Onion (Allium sp.)

Plumbago (Ceratostigma plumbaginoides)

Poker Plant (Kniphofia uvaria)

Scented Geraniums (Pelargonium sp.)

Sedum (Sedum sp.)

Sundrops (Oenothera tetragona)

Sweet Alyssum (Lobularia maritima)

Windflower (Anemone blanda)

Wormwood (Artemisia sp.)

SUNNY FALL GARDEN

Feather Reed Grass (Calamagrostis x acuti-flora ‘Karl Foerster’)

Fountain Grass (Pennisetum alopecuroides)

Heather (Calluna sp.)

Maiden Grass (Miscanthus sinensis)

Russian Sage (Perovskia atriplicifolia)

Snapdragon (Antirrhinum majus)

WET AREA GARDEN

Astilbe (Astilbe sp.)

Dwarf Mondo Grass (Ophiopogon japoni-cus)

Iris (Iris sp.)

Ribbon Grass (Phalaris arundinacea ‘Picta’)

Sweet Woodruff (Galium odoratum)

Turtlehead (Chelone sp.)

Wild Ginger (Asarum candense)

WOODLAND GARDEN

Bleeding Heart (Dicentra spectabilis)

Blue Cohosh (Caulophyllum thalictroides)

Cinnamon Fern (Osmunda cinnamomea)

Fringed Bleeding Heart (Dicentra eximia)

Hay-scented Fern (Dennstaedtia puncti-lobula)**

Hellebore (Helleborus sp.)

Holly Fern (Cyrtomium falcatum)

Interrupted Fern (Osmunda claytoniana)

Jack-in-the-Pulpit (Arisaema triphyllum)

Ostrich Fern (Struthiopteris)

Royal Fern (Osmunda regalis)

Sweet Woodruff (Galium odoratum)

Wild Ginger (Asarum candense)

Wood Fern (Dryopteris marginalis)

SELECT VEGETABLES

Beets (Beta vulgaris)

Fennel (Foeniculum vulgare)

Onions (Allium cepa)

Potatoes (Solanum turberosum)

LOCALLY OBSERVED “RESISTANT” WOODY PLANTS

CHOICE EVERGREENS

Colorado Blue Spruce (Picea pungens glauca)

Japanese Holly (Ilex crenata)

Juniper (Juniperus chinensis)

Pines (Pinus sp.)

CHOICE DECIDUOUS SHRUBS

European Privet (Ligustrum vulgare)**

Forsythia (Forsythia sp.)

Lilac (Syringa vulgaris)

Potentilla (Potentilla fruticosa)

Rose of Sharon (Hibiscus syriacus)

Sweet Fern (Comptonia peregrine)

Wisteria (Wisteria floribunda)

CHOICE DECIDUOUS TREES

Goldenraintree (Koelreuteria paniculata)

Gray Birch (Betula populifera)

Japanese Maple (Acer palmatum)

Staghorn Sumac (Rhus typhina)

Contact

Donna Peterson
Program Coordinator, Community Horticulture
dmp234@cornell.edu
518-828-3346 ext.106

Last updated May 28, 2019