Gardening Challenges in San Mateo County, California

Gardening challenges in San Mateo County, California

A couple of the wonderful benefits of living and working in San Mateo County, as well as the Silicon Valley, is our weather and proximity to open space preserves. The weather ("weather best by government test" is the slogan for Redwood City, the county seat) allows for a great array of plants to thrive here.  However, due to the proximity of the open space that we love and cherish, not all plants that grow here are suitable for every garden, including the one at 20 Sequoia Court in San Carlos.
Deer in San Carlos CA 94070colorful deer resistant garden in San Carlos CA
We often share our neighborhoods with hungry deer, who take great delight in the smorgasbord of roses, pansies and other common plants.

Fortunately many of the plants best suited to this Mediterranean climate  tend to be deer resistant. A quick Google search for "deer resistant plants in northern California" came up many hits, including these sites:

Google search, deer resistant plants

I encourage you to embrace the wildlife around us and accept the challenge to find garden plants that enable co-existing with the deer. And who knows, you'll likely create a colorful habitat for butterflies and birds in the process, to add delight to your eyes, song to your ears, and joy in your heart.

--- Come for a visit; Stay for a lifetime!

Lottie Kendall, Realtor®


CA DRE#10215160; 650-465-4547

Peninsula Living Business Page



Comment balloon 12 commentsLottie Kendall • September 20 2011 07:06PM


They don't like anything herbaceous - unless they are hungry or bored.

Posted by Yvette Chisholm, Associate Broker - Rockville, MD 301-758-9500 (Long & Foster Real Estate, Inc.) over 7 years ago

Hi Lottie,

Well since I'm a fellow gardener myself, I'll have to take a look at some of these sites.  Also my Mother gets tons of deer that eat all of her plants around her house.   Will have to tell her what I find.  She has lost oodles of Hostas to Deer.  Great info to have - Thanks!


Posted by Robert and Lisa Hammerstein -201-315-8618, Bergen County NJ Real Estate (Keller Williams Valley Realty) over 7 years ago

Hi Lottie,  We had a problem with deer when we lived in Monterey.  Yvette is right, the rosemary I planted did very well!  My yard is full of squirrels.  Lots of squirrels running up and down the trees and along the fences.  Their culinary philosophy seems to be to try anything at least once and bite most things once to render them unfit for humans.  I continue to try to outwit them.  I think the squirrels are winning.

Posted by Marge Draper, REALTOR, Keller Williams Realty, Menlo Park CA (Keller Williams Realty Palo Alto) over 7 years ago

Ahhh, clever slant on gardening in San Mateo!  I remember we used to always surround our vegetable gardens in Wisconsin with marigolds, but now I can't remember why!

Posted by Cara Marcelle Mancuso, Call a Marana neighbor, I'm THERE! LONG REALTY (Long Realty - Dove Mountain, Marana AZ) over 7 years ago

On my walk this morning I saw rabbits, brown pelicans, dragonflies and numerous birds but no deer.  We did have a bobcat roaming around the hill a few years ago.  That happens when you have lots of open space--and I'm thrilled to have it nearby.

Posted by Norma Toering Broker for Palos Verdes and Beach Cities, Palos Verdes Luxury Homes in L.A. (Charlemagne International Properties) over 7 years ago

Lottie,  I would intentionally plant what deer like to eat.  I feed the birds and if I had deer in my backyard I know I would feed them too!

Posted by Kathleen Daniels, San Jose Homes for Sale-Probate & Trust Specialist (KD Realty - 408.972.1822) over 7 years ago

We have a favorite spot that is also the deer's favorite spot.. if we go there and sit very still and very quiet sometimes we are rewarded.. :)  I don't care what they eat there.. they can have it all, it's just for them.

Posted by 1~Judi Barrett, BS Ed, Integrity Real Estate Services -IDABEL OK (Integrity Real Estate Services 118 SE AVE N, Idabel, OK 74745) over 7 years ago

Yvette, you've just described the deer here -- hungry and bored.  I think they are 'foodies.'

Hi Lisa - sorry your mother lost all her hostas; she'll appreciate some of the lists of deer-resistant plants I'm sure

Hi Marge, squirrels can be pretty comical, although the ones that next in my oak tree are pretty darn messy.

Did you use the marigold petals on salads, Cara? They're a bit spicy, quite tasty, and very pretty.

Posted by Lottie Kendall, Helping make your real estate dreams a reality (Compass) over 7 years ago

Norma, indeed we are lucky to have so much open space around. It's well worth it to modify our gardening habits.

Kathleen, the numbers of deer here are so plentiful that, if you attract them, you're soon overrun.

Posted by Lottie Kendall, Helping make your real estate dreams a reality (Compass) over 7 years ago

Hi Judi -- you must have a lovely 'quiet spot,' you and the deer. Do they stay away from your garden crops?

Posted by Lottie Kendall, Helping make your real estate dreams a reality (Compass) over 7 years ago

Lottie, we have deer problems here too. Along with deer resistant plants, taking my dogs hair after I brush him and spreading it around helps too!

Posted by Andrea Swiedler, Realtor, Southern Litchfield County CT (Berkshire Hathaway HomeServices New England Properties) over 7 years ago

Hi Andrea - I've heard of that; also the various repellant sprays. Lots of things to try.

Posted by Lottie Kendall, Helping make your real estate dreams a reality (Compass) over 7 years ago