Do rabbits eats zinnias in reality? Zinnias are famous for their colorful presence, however, gardeners often claim that rabbits have attacked the flower.
Why do some rabbits eat them and others avoid them? Let’s delve into this discussion on rabbits eating zinnias and ways to keep them away from your favorite flowers.
- Do Rabbits Eat Zinnias?
- Why Do Most Rabbits Avoid Eating Zinnias?
- Why Do Some Rabbits Eat Zinnias?
- Should You Allow Your Rabbits To Eat Zinnias?
- Tips On Preventing Rabbits From Entering Garden and Eating Zinnias
Do Rabbits Eat Zinnias?
Rabbits do eat zinnias – sometimes. Rabbits generally don’t like the strong smell and prickly centers of the ornamental plant. Thus, wild rabbits mostly avoid chewing zinnia plants unless they are running short on food and would eat anything to survive. However, the case might be the opposite with pet rabbits.
Many rabbits find the zinnias easy to chew and an easier way to fill up their appetite. Zinnias are high in fiber and can fill up rabbits’ stomachs pretty quickly. So, many rabbits find it an easy diet without hassles and need to roam around.
Then, a few rabbits will experiment with their palate as they grow up. During this experiment, many rabbits try out zinnia flowers and plants with their palates. However, they won’t continue eating these plants for too long, mainly because of their overpowering smell. Also, the prickly centers of the flower will keep them away mostly.
As you see in the discussion, some rabbits will eat zinnia flowers while others won’t. Thus, we can’t conclude that zinnias are safe in your garden. Thus, it is crucial to see why some rabbits consume colorful and beautiful flowers and others won’t.
Why Do Most Rabbits Avoid Eating Zinnias?
Rabbits, in general, avoid eating zinnias in your garden. These fast-paced animals are primarily vegetarian and live on diets available in their habitat. They aren’t used to consuming flowers and their plants. Also, wild rabbits don’t like plants and flowers with prickly edges and surroundings.
– Strong Odor
Zinnias have an empowered odor. Most bunnies dislike tasting this odor and will keep it away from the plant. The odor of zinnias is so overpowering that you can smell it from 20 feet. Most birds and animals dislike such strong odor.
Thus, they don’t like eating Zinnia flowers. However, bunnies sometimes try out the leaves and petals as part of their dietary experiment. Also, rabbits like to chew leaves even if their stomach is complete, and graze on the Zinnias occasionally.
– Prickly Center
The center of the Zinnias flower is quite prickly and the stems are also stiff and hairy with tinier brushes around them.
Bunnies and rabbits don’t like consuming such prickly and hairy flowers and stems. Usually, they will consume vegetables that they can easily bite and chew. That’s why you will see rabbits eating zinnia, cabbage, and tomato.
All these vegetables have smooth skin, which rabbits love to eat. It doesn’t hurt their tongue and is highly digestive too. Fortunately, zinnias aren’t so digestive and may cause stomach aches in rabbits.
Thus, they keep the flower out of their diet unless they are on a mission to survive. If wild rabbits don’t find their vegetables and fruits easily, they will likely consume the flower for survival.
Also, some rabbits have habits of sneaking a peak into gardens in search of easy meals. When they keep visiting your garden, they will eventually experiment with zinnias too.
Hence, finding ways to keep rabbits away from your garden is important. In the relevant section, we will discuss tips to safeguard your garden from rabbits and other wild animals, especially deer.
Why Do Some Rabbits Eat Zinnias?
Some rabbits eat zinnias because of the fiber in the flower and its stems. Although rabbits don’t generally eat Zinnias, some bunnies build a habit of eating them. Also, some bunnies will find the stem and leaves an easy diet option in their menu.
– Appealing Taste
Pet rabbits often are attracted to the strong smell of the Zinnia flower and they will consume it for the taste. Pet bunnies consider these stems and leaves as a reward. Thus, at times, they will eat it. The Japanese beetle will join the party with bunnies, at times.
When this eating continues, you will see the rabbits trying to eat the flower whenever they get a chance. It is a bad habit of bunnies, and you must take action to keep them away. It is crucial for both their health and your garden.
– Easy Chewing Ability
Rabbits don’t like vegetables and fruits that are hard to bite and chew. They often go for plants that they can chew and digest quickly. Regarding this, Zinnias are an excellent option for them with their medium-stiffness.
Also, dwarf zinnias, which we mostly grow in gardens, reach 6 to 12 inches in height so bunnies can reach them without jumping and hopping too much. It does not elude them as they can easily reach, grab and chew the stem and flowers.
Many rabbits will find it an easy way to fill up their stomach. It happens mostly during droughts when wild bunnies find it hard to find their meals.
This chewing habit of theirs continues even with a full stomach. Scenes aren’t rare when you will see pet rabbits chewing into different plants even after a full meal. It happens because of the grazing habit of the rabbits.
They like chewing and grazing continuously, even if their stomach is full. They do so to keep their teeth size in control. Also, continuous chewing helps their digestive system.
– Rich in Fiber
The main reason rabbits eat zinnias is the high presence of fiber in the flower and its stem. As they are vegetarians and live on plants, they look for foods with fiber. It helps them full fill their hunger with ease.
The fiber helps their muscle growth and remain healthy. Also, a higher level of fiber means it can keep their stomach full for longer. On top of it, fiber allows their body growth and strength. It is helpful for their agility and speed.
Hence, pet rabbits often try their luck on Zinnias even if they have ample meals at home. Its appealing taste and easy chewing ability with quick digestion mean many rabbits take it as their reward. It happens mostly for pet bunnies.
Should You Allow Your Rabbits To Eat Zinnias?
You can allow your rabbits to eat zinnias as they are safe to eat – generally, rabbits can eat almost all types of flowers. It won’t affect their diet system. However, it’s not recommended that you allow your pet bunnies to eat the flower continuously.
It doesn’t have any protein or fat. So, bunnies will receive only fiber. As they continue eating the flower and its stem, they will lack protein, minerals, and vitamins. Thus, it will affect their health and agility.
Plus, the prickly design of the petals and their center will cause scoring on the tongue of the bunnies. At times, smaller rabbits will try eating Zinnias due to their inexperience. As it happens, you will find that they are rubbing their tongue on grass. It happens because the prickly center of the flower will have cuts and sores in the bunnies’ mouths.
Hence, experts suggest you shouldn’t allow the rabbits to continue eating the zinnias. You may occasionally allow the bunnies to consume the flower petals as a reward. But it shouldn’t be more than once a week.
Instead, you should prepare a proper diet for your pet rabbit. Plus, you may keep one or two vegetables in the garden. It will help the rabbits to eat them as they roam around the home and garden.
– A Few Garden Vegetables That Pet Rabbits Can Eat
When you develop a garden, you might look at the rabbit and deer-resistant plants. But what if you have pet rabbits and cats at home?
Can you plant vegetables in your garden that suit their digestion system? The good news is there’re many veggies you can plant in the garden that will enhance your garden’s look and be suitable for pets.
The list of suitable vegetables for rabbits includes:
- Bell peppers (without seeds)
- Cucumber with leaves
- Carrots with leaves
- Brussel sprouts
- Zucchini squash
As you see, rabbits may eat celery, zucchini, broccoli, and parsnip from the garden. Plus, you may use these veggies for preparing your salads and vegetable dishes. On top of it, you may also have these leafy plants in your garden for pet rabbits and kitties.
- Leafy green lettuce
- Turnip Greens
Henceforth, homeowners can arrange their gardens with different plants for their pet rabbits. But you won’t like wild rabbits attacking your garden.
Seeing your favorite veggies and flowers eaten by bunnies will be heartbreaking. So, let’s look at how to stop bunning from feasting in your garden.
Tips On Preventing Rabbits From Entering Garden and Eating Zinnias
To prevent rabbits from entering your garden and eating your zinnias you can do one or all of the following: Plant flowers and trees that they don’t like, use fencing, and make your garden less appealing. We give more detailed pointers below.
Zinnias are wonderful flowers with attractive petals and foliage. So, you can be disappointed when you see wild rabbits and even pet ones having a feast with them. You must find ways to protect your garden from bunnies and deer during those moments.
– Plant Flowers And Trees That Rabbits Don’t Like
The easiest way to protect your loveable garden is to plant trees, shrubs, and flowers that the invaders dislike. The good thing is rabbits and deer both dislike similar plants. So, planting deer-resistant plants will be useful to protect them from bunnies and even kitties.
You can choose the following options:
- Lilac Bush
- Black-eyed Susan
As you see, these are all beautiful flowers with optimum rabbit and deer resistance. So, you can decorate your garden with them and enjoy a rabbit-free scene. Plus, these flowers’ variety of colors and shades will charm your garden.
– Use Fencing
If planting the deer and rabbit-resistant plants in the garden doesn’t work, you should use fencing. In fact, applying fences to surround your entire garden is always a best practice. It keeps wild animals away and makes it easy to maintain the plants with ease.
As you use fences around the garden, rabbits can’t jump to cross them. So, they will be away from your favorite flowers. It is also a humane step because consuming too many flowers might cause serious health problems for wild animals.
As you prepare the fence, you need to be aware of the following two facts:
- The fencing should have enough height to stop the bunnies from crossing it. On average, the fence should be 30 to 36 inches in height. Rabbits can’t jump to cross such height. It means they won’t be able to enter the garden by crossing the high fencing.
- Ensure that the fencing is safe for rabbits. Although you aim to keep them away, you shouldn’t use materials that can hurt wild animals. Also, avoid using electrification on the fences to protect wild animals. Finally, make sure that the fencing isn’t too penetrative so that it hurts a rabbit.
Henceforth, you should be careful while fencing the garden. You should use mesh or wire fencing for the garden. Also, for the fencing, follow these rules.
- Bury the fence at least 12 inches deep inside the soil. It will stop the deer and rabbits from uprooting the fence. Also, ensure it has at least 30 inches above the ground. Bunnies can’t jump this height. So, it would be enough to safeguard the plants.
- As you use wired or mesh fencing, ensure it has close connectivity. The fencing shouldn’t leave any open side. Otherwise, rabbits can breach it and start feasting in your garden.
– Make Your Garden Less Appealing
Finally, consider making your garden less attractive and appealing to rabbits and deer. Many rabbits will hide in the garden to safeguard themselves from predators. So, they look for errant sheds, tall grass, and low-growing shrubs as their hiding space.
If your garden has a similar setup, rabbits will enjoy living here. So, ensure that your garden doesn’t have shrubs and tall grasses. Also, don’t plant vegetables and leafy plants that attract deer and rabbits.
It will be useful to keep bunnies away without fencing. Also, it makes your garden maintenance easy.
Do rabbits eat zinnias? It has a confusing answer as, generally, rabbits dislike consuming zinnias.
However, a few bunnies will develop the habit of eating zinnias for rich fiber and easy digestion.
- Wild rabbits will eat zinnias during drought and cold seasons as their natural food sources dry up.
- You shouldn’t allow pet rabbits to continue eating too many zinnias. It lacks protein and fats and so isn’t ideal for bunnies.
- Use safe fencing and deer-resistant plants to keep rabbits away. It will be an effective way to protect the garden.
At times, a rabbit can eat zinnias but it’s not their regular diet plan. To protect the plant, you can place them in the center of your garden and out of the bunnies’ reach.
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