I at times have many goats grazing in our locality. Recently a few cows were seen too. I just offered one of the cows a few leaves from Jasminum sambac plant growing in our garden. The cow smelled and left those leaves untouched. However on being given mango leaves, not a bit of it remained. The same situation did I observe with goats.I have the following questions:

What is the difference between leaves of others and leaves of Jasminum sambac? Why do herbivores avoid consumption of these leaves? Does it happen with other leaves too?

  • $\begingroup$ No idea why the cow hate it. Its a rabbit safe plant: wabbitwiki.com/wiki/Vegetables $\endgroup$ – Devashish Das Aug 2 '14 at 18:05
  • $\begingroup$ I havent ever experimented with rabbits. However this is a practical situation in case of cows and goats. I have observed this a number of times, since I was small $\endgroup$ – Shamayeta Aug 3 '14 at 1:21
  • 2
    $\begingroup$ Some animals don't like any unusual smelling or textured foliage. I've noticed that deer will avoid many non-toxic plants that rabbits enjoy. I've noted that deer avoid aromatic, slimy, prickly, hairy, spicy, etc, and prefer plants like hostas, which taste similar to lettuce. $\endgroup$ – J. Musser Aug 3 '14 at 2:08
  • $\begingroup$ what about regular herbivores...cows and goats?? $\endgroup$ – Shamayeta Aug 3 '14 at 10:24
  • $\begingroup$ Goats will eat almost anything, including the canvass on your convertible mustang :(. $\endgroup$ – J. Musser Aug 9 '14 at 1:49

Cattles actually hate shrubs which are very tough to break and tasteless(for a cow). Some plants they won't touch are:

  • Lantana urticoides (West Indian shrub verbena),
  • Malvaviscus arboreus var.drummondii (wax mallow)
  • Rhus copallinum (winged sumac)
  • Viburnum acerifolium (mapleleaf viburnum).
  • Morella cerifera (wax myrtle)
  • Ilex vomitoria (yaupon).



Lantana urticoides


Malvaviscus Arboreus


Rhus copallinum

(source: naturallandscapesnursery.com)

Viburnum acerifolium

Morella cerifera

Ilex vomitoria

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