Rabbits are herbivores and they dine out throughout the year, thus, rabbits tend to make a fast meal out of any of your flowering plants. And this characteristic of rabbits makes almost no flowering plant safe from the rabbits. Thereby, if you are growing dahlias in your garden, you surely would want to learn whether rabbits eat dahlias or not.
Stick till the end to find out the answer to this query.
Do Rabbits Eat Dahlias?
Dahlias are one of the rabbit-resistant flowering plants and they are potentially unsafe as well for rabbits to munch on, thus, rabbits don’t really like to eat dahlias. But being unsafe or disliking dahlias can’t stop rabbits from eating dahlias as rabbits eat almost anything that they run across.
Even though dahlias are somewhat rabbit-resistant plants, being concerned enough to know whether rabbits are going to eat the dahlia leaves, flowers, as well as, the entire plant or not is natural for you.
So, below the facts are explicitly explained for your knowledge.
Dahlias make one of those flowering plants that of course aren’t a rabbit’s first preference to eat, as a result, rabbits really aren’t into eating dahlia flowers.
However, do not expect that rabbit absolutely will not eat dahlia flowers because in reality it is quite the opposite. Rabbits are known for munching on almost any flowering plants, so if dahlia flowers are within their reach, they surely will eat dahlia flowers too.
Rabbits are very least likely to eat dahlias as whole plants because the stems of dahlias are woody and rough, the leaves have quite sticky and fuzzy texture, and the flowers don’t seem that palatable to rabbits.
Besides, dahlias as whole flowering plants are known to be rabbit-resistant flowering plants because they’re unhealthy to rabbits due to being grown on tubers. So this somewhat makes a reason why rabbits perhaps don’t eat dahlia plants.
However, dahlias being unsafe doesn’t make a strong reason behind rabbits not eating dahlia plants because rabbits munch on almost any flowering plants that they can reach without thinking if it’s safe for them or not.
Rabbits might munch on the young dahlia leaves during lean springtime but they generally don’t prefer eating dahlia leaves as much as other plants.
Dahlia leaves have a fuzzy and sticky texture that doesn’t hit the appetite of rabbits which is why rabbits dislike them and avoid eating them, but this doesn’t mean that rabbits will not eat dahlia leaves at all. If there is a scarcity of food sources, rabbits will eat them without having a second thought.
Young rabbits tend to eat young dahlia leaves while looking for tasting new tastes.
Do Wild Rabbits Eat Dahlias?
Dahlias are considered one of the rabbit-resistant plants in the wild as well, thus, wild rabbits also don’t tend to eat dahlias.
Besides, wild rabbits share the same feelings regarding dahlia leaves being fuzzy and sticky, the stem being quite rough to eat effortlessly, and the dahlia flowers not being that much desired for eating. As a result, wild rabbits avoid dahlias in wild to feast on them, and they rather look for an alternative food source.
Are Dahlias Rabbit Resistant?
Dahlias are rabbit-resistant flowering plants because they have a harsh, sticky, and fuzzy texture, and rabbits are known for strongly avoiding flower plants with such texture.
And as far as it’s concerned about rabbits liking dahlias, rest assured that rabbits don’t like eating dahlias because of the texture of dahlias leaves and stems, even such fleshy, showy dahlias don’t attract them as a tasty food source.
Therefore, dahlias have been stated as one of the rabbit-resistant flowing plants.
Are Dahlias Poisonous To Rabbits?
There actually is a conflicting answer regarding dahlias being poisonous to rabbits. Some sources have stated dahlias as one of those potentially harmful and poisonous flowering plants that rabbits really should not eat at all. However, there isn’t any solid validity in this statement as not much research has been done on this topic due to rabbits’ disliking of dahlias. So anyway, just avoid feeding your pet rabbit dahlias, and prevent wild rabbits raid your garden to eat dahlias.
On the contrary, you may find other sources stating dahlias as a safe to consume flowering plants for rabbits. They have considered dahlia leaves and petals safe that rabbits can consume.
Do Rabbits Eat Dahlia Tubers?
Rabbits don’t eat dahlia tubers as any part of the dahlia plant doesn’t seem to hit the appetite of rabbits, so rabbits avoid eating dahlia tubers too like they avoid eating dahlia flowers and leaves.
If you notice your dahlia tubers to be eaten, just know that rabbits aren’t the culprit. Possibly, mice, chipmunks, voles, squirrels, and gophers are eating dahlia tubers.
How To Protect Dahlias From Rabbits?
Rabbits still can invade the garden to eat dahlias if they don’t find any other food source. So in this case, give a try to the solutions explained below to protect your dahlias from rabbits.
Raised Flower beds:
The first way of protecting your dahlias from rabbits would be planting/replanting dahlias in a raised flower bed in your garden. The flower bed should be at least 2 feet or more higher than the ground level from all sides so that these jumpy furry rabbits can’t reach the dahlia plant easily. Thus, a raised flower bed will discourage bunnies from eating dahlias.
Most bunnies can’t jump more than 2 feet higher from the ground, thus, install a fence that must be around 26” tall at least from the ground level. Also, make sure that the fence has plunged at least 10” under the soil and the fence’s openings are not more wider than 1”. You can use mesh wire to build up the fence.
Grow Plants That Rabbits Dislike:
There are some flowering plants that rabbits absolutely can’t withstand. And the list of flowering plants includes Mexican marigolds, lavender, Russian sage, yarrow, celandine poppy, dusty miller, and buttery weed.
And on the veggie side, rabbits dislike the scents of onions, garlic, leeks, and chives. You can opt for planning either any of these flowering plants or vegetable plants in between dahlias to deter rabbits from eating dahlias.
Use Rabbit Repellent Scents:
Rabbits are sniffers, so using scents that are going to irritate their noses and sensing ability would work greatly in preventing rabbits from eating your dahlias.
You can spray DIY hot pepper mixture around the dahlia plants so that the spicy scent of hot pepper will irritate rabbits’ noses and keep them away.
Spraying a mixture of crushed garlic cloves and water around the dahlia flower bed would work greatly in deterring rabbits too.
Similarly, sprinkling gone meal around the dahlias certainly will deter rabbits as rabbits can’t tolerate the terrible odor of bone meal.
Scare Them Away:
Rabbits are scared of dogs, if you have a pet dog, you can keep him in the garden to guard your dahlias and chase rabbits away.
Or else, set a motion detector water sprinkler in the garden. This water sprinkler will sprinkle water all around the garden as soon as it will detect the footsteps of rabbits. Thus, rabbits will run away.
What Animals Eat Dahlias?
Some animals absolutely like feasting on dahlias, and a list containing brief descriptions of those animals have been added below for you to know those particular animals.
Dahlias seem to be squirrels’ one of the favorite flowering plants to munch on. Squirrels not only will eat dahlia leaves, stems, and stalks but they also will dig the dahlia tubers up and enjoy eating them as well. However, they may not eat dahlia flowers.
Chipmunks are another dahlia eater. They prefer eating the dahlia tubers more, but they also will eat leaves and stems.
Gophers being nocturnal critters, they will munch on dahlias at night during their eating season in spring when dahlias are getting ready for blossoming. They will munch on dahlia flower buds and tops mostly.
Moles also seem to enjoy eating dahlias. They mainly love to munch on the dahlia tubers, but they equally enjoy eating the dahlia leaves and roots.
Voles are rodent species that find dahlias quite an interesting plant to eat. Voles basically love munching on the dahlia seed pods as these seed pods make a constant food source for them.
Dahlias are an easy food source for rats, they eat dahlia flowers and seeds.
Like rabbits, dahlias don’t make the first preference for deer as well. But deer tend to eat dahlia plants if they are hungry or can reach the plants within their limits.
Rabbits tend not to eat dahlias much like other flowering plants because dahlias have a kind of harsh, fuzzy, and clammy texture that rabbits don’t prefer in the plants they eat. Thereby, dahlias make a rabbit-resistant plant. However, due to a scarcity of food sources, rabbits may eat dahlias too.