Duck "proof" plants?

Discussion in 'Ducks' started by LaurelC, Jan 26, 2014.

  1. LaurelC

    LaurelC Chillin' With My Peeps

    Mar 22, 2013
    Bothell, WA
    Trying to determine what might survive planted around my duck pen? What do you have planted that the ducks leave alone?
  2. TLWR

    TLWR Chillin' With My Peeps

    Jul 10, 2010
    southern AL
    I have hostas and day lilies around the duck pond.
    Ally has decided the stella d'oro is a great spot to lay. So every year, she makes herself comfortable in the middle of that plant. So far, it keeps coming back.
    The hostas, they just walk all over those, but again, they come back.
    The back side has caladium and elephant ear that they don't bother, but do sleep around at times.

    Whatever is around, they pretty much trample. I had some nice mums planted, but between them and the dogs, they get smooshed all the time. Still come back, but they never look all that great because somebody is breaking them by running them over (more the dogs than the ducks for this). The garden along the fence to the duck yard (which is just where fresh water and the food hut is - keeps the dogs out of the duck food) I just don't plant stuff where they go under the fence to get into the food.

    They haven't eaten any of it, just beat it up.
    Last edited: Jan 26, 2014
  3. LaurelC

    LaurelC Chillin' With My Peeps

    Mar 22, 2013
    Bothell, WA
    Well that's good to know. Maybe something shrubby or woodier would be safe from them.
  4. pinusresinosa

    pinusresinosa Chillin' With My Peeps

    Dec 23, 2013
    North Branch, MN
    I thought some hydrangeas would survive my roving flock of ducks last year, considering that they were nice and woody. Nope, they nibbled all of the new tips and all of the leaves off of them. They ate my caladmiums down to the bulbs, sort of sand papering them smooth under the ground when it rained mostly, rooting in the soft dirt where I planted them- guess the shoots were tasty. Hostas got the obsessed nibble, since they found slugs around them and decided they wanted salad with their meat. The only stuff that got it worse than these were anything like lettuce, arugula, kale, mizuna, or any greens I planted around for us to eat/to look pretty. I fenced off an area and tossed cress seeds down, removed the fence to see what they'd do- they instantly came by to the new fresh patch of cress and nibbled it down to dirt. Seed heads of everything- baby's breath, bachelor buttons, daylilies, malvas, hibiscus, everything- nibbled off and tossed onto the ground in the flower gardens. They did leave the zinnias alone though.

    But my ducks were all young last year. Maybe this year the adults won't be so ravenous!

    And to answer your question to the original post, in my experience almost nothing is safe- even the woodies. Even if they don't eat it, they seem to take pleasure in nibbling at it and destroying it to nothings.
  5. Frank Phinster

    Frank Phinster Chillin' With My Peeps

    They usually leave alone what is thorny and or has thick, withstanding leaves. Also, shrubs with a certain height which protects their leaves from being eaten can do pretty well, even if everything green on them in reach will be devoured.
    You can have a nice horticulture and a flock of ducks, but hardly in the same area.
  6. Amiga

    Amiga Overrun with Runners

    Jan 3, 2010
    Southern New England
    At our place, the amount of time also plays a role. We have some lovely lovely gardens and miniature wild spaces, and a flock of ducks. I keep them away from tender plants unless I want them to eat them.

    Shrubs generally are okay, ferns unless the ducks are bored and locked in with the ferns, same with hosta, epimedium, sweet woodruff, day lilies. In early spring they are so hungry for green and things are so tender, I need to watch them closely then.

    Solidago (goldenrod) and some of the taller aster family plants do fine, as well as black-eyed Susans.

    They will nom on comfrey, leafy greens, and sprouting anything.

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