As a home gardener, the last thing you want is to have deer, squirrels, groundhogs, rabbits, raccoons, and other outdoor wildlife using your crops as an all-you-can-eat buffet. These animals love to snack on any food they can find in the ground – especially as it blooms in preparation for harvesting – and will use any means necessary to do so.
Keeping them out of your garden can be a difficult task, but there are safe measures you can take to ensure these not-so-garden-friendly furry critters keep their paws off your fruits and vegetables.
Keep Watch and Identify
First, you need to identify what type animal is infiltrating your garden and which crops they prefer. For instance, rabbits may enjoy carrots, peppers, and tomatoes more than raccoons would, who will go for the larger crops like corn stalks and zucchini.
You’ll have to keep a watchful eye at odd hours when animals think the coast is clear. If you’re really serious about it, install cameras to catch the creature in the act. This knowledge will go a long way to ensuring your garden is clear of animals looking for a snack.
Clear It Out
Animals are easily scared by the presence of humans. Oftentimes, they’ll use tall grass and cornstalks, underground tunnels (groundhogs) or hiding areas to remain undetected. But without these resources, your garden becomes a lot less attractive to the average animal.
Keep your grass cut short, cover up those holes, and find their hiding spots. In turn, maybe they’ll find another garden to menace.
Repellents And Pets
Because poisonous baits cause harm to the wildlife around you, consider a few humane methods to scare them away.
For example, did you know that animals don’t like garlic? Try finding a garlic-scented repellent to spray around your garden. It won’t cause harm to your crops, but will usually keep animals away. Other repellents include scented soap, vinegar, hot pepper extract, and – surprisingly – dog hair from your pet. Pests will smell the scent of your dog and be less inclined to intrude on what they think is their territory.
You can even use your pets to keep watch. Dogs love to chase furry animals, while cats can be especially useful to catch rodents and gophers.
Reflective Lights and Fences
When was the last time you used a CD-ROM? It’s probably been years, right?
CDs can be used to protect your garden. The reflective light off the bottom leads animals to believe they are harmful – especially nocturnal ones at night. And if all else fails, fences typically work to keep most small animals out. You can use tall chicken wire to surround your entire garden, and smaller wire to cover seeding areas and larger vegetables such as lettuce plants.
Animals need to eat, but it shouldn’t come at the expense of your garden! These tips will help to protect your crops for a successful harvest.
We invite you to contact us if you have questions.
Please stay healthy and we hope to hear from you soon to discuss your property search and status.
Until Next Time!