Deer Food: Japanese honeysuckle (Lonicera japonica)
Class: browse; highly preferred by deer
Description: An introduced (from Asia) woody, twining or trailing evergreen vine occurring on moist soil of bottomlands and uplands along streams, fence rows and timber edges. Japanese honeysuckle is often introduced into “wild” areas because it is used as an ornamental around dwellings. It has showy and fragrant flowers in addition to evergreen foliage.
Fruit, flowers, leaves and stems are used by many birds, mammals and insects. Deer love honeysuckled leaves and the fresh-growth of stems. Honeysuckle is a high quality forage with protein contents ranging from 9 to 20 percent and a digestibility of 75 percent. Protein content is dependent upon season and soil fertility with the highest levels reported during the cooler months of the year — when deer need food.
Japanese honeysuckle Photos: