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Do Deer Eat Blue Spruce? (Read This First!)

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Deer love munching on any trees in their sight. While there are some trees that deer try to steer clear of, they can go for any trees if they are hungry and there are no other alternatives. 

If you don’t want your trees to become the food of deer or get damaged by them, there are ways to prevent that.

Do deer eat blue spruce?

Deer rarely eat blue spruce. But it doesn’t mean they will never eat it. They are mostly interested in the young tips and would rarely go for the mature needle-like leaves. They can destroy a spruce tree by rubbing their antlers on the trunks so you may have to look for ways to protect the trees.

Stick with us and learn if deers can eat the following sorts of blue spruce –

Colorado blue spruce trees:

Colorado blue spruce trees are termed as rarely damaged by deer. It means that deer rarely touch or eat the leaves. The Colorado blue spruce belongs to the pine family. It is known for its beautiful foliage, pyramid shape, and sharp needle leaves. 

It grows up to be a long tree with deep roots. The prickly needle-like leaves look very attractive but deer find them hard to eat hence they avoid the blue spruce pine trees. These trees do best when planted during the late winter or early spring. 

Harsh winter can be harmful to the Colorado blue spruce.

Baby or dwarf blue spruce trees:

It may seem that deer would be interested in the baby or dwarf blue spruce trees, but in reality, the baby spruce trees are quite sturdy and hardy. They don’t catch diseases quickly and lead a healthy life. 

Deer don’t usually go for the baby or dwarf blue spruce trees for their sturdy nature. 

The baby blue spruce trees are known to withstand harsh weather, excessive cold, heavy snow, heavy wind, and even drought. This is why these trees are also considered trees that deer won’t eat or damage. 

Are blue spruce deer resistant?

There are no such trees that can be labeled as deer resistant. Deer love to munch on different parts of trees. But there are some trees that deer would rather avoid like the blue spruce trees. Deer rarely eat blue spruce but that doesn’t mean they can never eat them. 

If the situation compels them to, they can go for them. 

They are mostly attracted to the young tips that are easy to eat. The needle-like leaves are too prickly and hard to eat so they would try to avoid them. Deer avoid eating Colorado blue spruce and baby blue spruce trees. 

They sometimes try to eat the Norway spruce trees when in desperate need of food.

Do deer like blue spruce trees?

Deer in particular are not a fan of blue spruce trees. This is mostly because of the sturdy nature and needle-like leaves of the spruce. For example, the Colorado blue spruce trees have sharp and prickly leaves that deer can’t eat. Also, the trees are huge and too long for them to reach. 

But deer can indeed munch on any leaves they find in their sight. While they may not go for mature spruce trees for their needles, they may still make a move for the young tips. Deer are not attracted to blue spruce trees hence, they rarely try to eat or damage them. 

But, they may still rub their antlers and this can destroy the trunks sometimes. 

How do keep deer from eating blue spruce trees?

There are ways to keep deer from eating blue spruce trees. 

Spraying hot pepper mixture over the leaves:

Deer don’t like the smell and taste of hot pepper. A great way of discouraging deer to eat your spruce leaves is by applying a hot pepper mixture over the leaves. You can use a spray bottle to do this. 

Many gardeners take the help of hot pepper spray to discourage some animals and insects from feeding on the plants. When deer smell the hot pepper spray on the spruce leaves, they will prefer to steer clear of the smell. 

You just need to make sure to reapply the hot pepper mixture whenever it rains. 

Tying dryer sheets from the limbs of the trees:

Another good way can be to try dryer sheets from the limbs of the spruce trees. Deer dislike the smell and will maintain a safe distance from the trees.

Many gardeners follow the wrapping up method to safeguard their trees and plants from animals, harsh weather, and especially, bad winter. While not all trees can be wrapped up, blue spruce trees can be wrapped up for better protection.

Building a fence surrounding the trees:

You can just take the help of a fence to protect your blue spruce trees. Building a fence all around the spruce trees will protect the trees from not only deer but also any other animals that can harm them. 

Fences are great if you want to live without worrying about animals ruining your trees. 

When you’re building a fence around the blue spruce trees to prevent them from getting eaten by deer, make sure that the height is at least 8 feet. Or else, deer will be able to easily jump over the fence. You can also fence the whole area for better protection.

What animals eat blue spruce trees?

Deer don’t like the prickly leaves of blue spruce trees but can go for the young tips. Apart from deer, there are many more other animals that eat one or more parts of the blue spruce trees.


Spruce trees have a lot of cones and seeds that squirrels love to store. Hence, they eat the spruce ends to gather as many cones and seeds as they possibly can to store for later. 

Especially during winter and early spring, squirrels start gnawing through the ends that make the tree fall so they can eat the buds as well. 

Grouse and snowshoe hare:

Snowshoe hare and grouse can eat even the needle-like leaves of the blue spruce trees. The grouse also eats the new buds of blue spruce. Along with the leaves, the snowshoe hare goes for the barks and the twigs too.

Bears and porcupine:

Bears and porcupines don’t really pounce and eat the leaves or the buds, but they can sometimes nibble on the bark of the blue spruce that can damage the trees.


Just like deer, the rabbits also go for the young tips of blue spruce trees. They prefer not to feed on the needles. 

Mice, voles, and chipmunks:

These small pesky rodents are also attracted to the blue spruce trees. They don’t go for the leaves. The mice and voles love eating the seedlings of blue spruce. While chipmunks eat the seeds.

Some birds:

Birds mostly go for seeds when it comes to evergreen trees. The sharp needle leaves of blue spruce are hard for them to eat. But some birds love eating spruce seeds. These birds include nuthatches, chickadees, pine siskin, pine grosbeaks, and crossbills.

Final thoughts

Deer rarely eat blue spruce trees. They may eat them when they are desperate. Even when they don’t eat them, they can still damage the trees by rubbing their antlers. They don’t eat the blue spruce trees for their sharp needle-like leaves but they may go for the young tips sometimes.

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