Keeping Animals Out of Your Garden

Category Pest Control
Whether it is your neighbor's pet or some form of wildlife, keeping animals out of the garden can be difficult. This is a page about keeping animals out of your garden.


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June 30, 2005

We use mousetraps to keep squirrels, rabbits and cats from ruining our garden. The noise scares them without hurting them so that they don't return.

By Pat K

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We had a raccoon and cats that were being nuisances. I purchased several of the "old fashioned" toilet bowl fresheners - the type that hang in the bowl and smell so bad. I hung them along the bottom of the fence especially in areas I know the animal used for access. They have worked like a charm.

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September 15, 2010

I've tried various methods to keep pests (cats and birds) away from sown beds and young seedling beds without any success, until I tried this method. Spread rose twigs (after pruning) over the bed. Make sure pets can't creep through twigs. This is the best method to save your sown beds and young seedlings


By anura from New Zealand

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June 3, 2005

Tips and ideas for protecting your plants from small animals. Post your ideas.

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We have been having bunny and squirrel problems invading our little garden. To prevent animals from coming, we placed plastic forks all around. You can use other plastic utensils like knives and spoons, but forks work best!

Forks in the Garden to Scare off Animals - black plastic forks, tines up, placed in raised garden

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Ask a QuestionHere are the questions asked by community members. Read on to see the answers provided by the ThriftyFun community or ask a new question.

Is there a natural way to repel deer from eating garden veggies, besides a fence?

Hardiness Zone: 3b

By linn from Dartmouth, Nova Scotia


August 10, 20101 found this helpful

Try sprinkling some cayenne pepper along your flower beds. Animals have a heightened sense of smell and they can't stand the smell or tingle of it. :) Best of luck!

Reply Was this helpful? 1
August 10, 20101 found this helpful

If you are troubled by deer or rabbits eating plants in your garden, try this inexpensive spray. Whisk one egg with 1 cup water; pour into a 1 quart pistol grip spray bottle. Add 1 tsp dish soap.


Fill rest with water. Set outside in the sun for about 3 days, until it's putrefied. One little squirt does the job. You do not have to over saturate. Reapply after a rain. Source is unknown. I heard it from a friend who has used it for a long time.

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October 21, 20101 found this helpful

There are motion activated 'scare crows' that when there's moment of a dear, rabbit, bird, raccoon or other animal (even your neighbors dig happy dog) ill make a sudden movement to startle them away. That's also variations of that with a sprinkler that shoots a bit of water to startle the intruder away.

There is absolutely no harm done to the animals and no poisons or affected plants. And its also aesthetically pleasing. And unlike owl and coyote statues the animals wont become desensitized to them and ignore it. The only down fall is they may be a touch costly. but its well worth it. And unlike topical sprays it wont harm the flowers or produce, It wont add a bad odor and you don't need to remember to reapply it weekly.

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June 9, 20160 found this helpful

This worked for an elderly gardener in the country: She saved her urine and buried open jars of it around the garden with the openings exposed. She also saved hair from her hairbrush and put it in the garden.

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June 21, 20161 found this helpful

The motion activated sensors do not work for me. I have had rabbits eating grass right in front of them and squirrels don't seem bothered either.

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April 7, 20170 found this helpful

Where do you buy thesel motion activatived scare crows?

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Answer this Question...

How do you keep the deer, squirrels, coons, ground hogs, and rabbits out or your garden?

Hardiness Zone: 6a

By THOMAS BRYANT from Kansas City, MO


November 6, 20101 found this helpful

If you figure out a foolproof way, patent it, and you'll be rich! A good fence goes far in helping to keep them out; but groundhogs and raccoons can climb, and deer can jump (unless it is very high). The 'hogs will also dig underneath, as can rabbits.


If you can make a four-foot fence, with small enough wire to keep the rabbits out, you can run an electric (fence) wire at the top and bottom. Watch for digging, and you should be fine. I have tried the mothballs and marigolds, pepper wax, and all of that. It seems to make no difference for me. Since my fence is only 3 feet tall, and the 'hog gets in anyway, I am thinking that next year I may add the electric, or maybe plant a row of tasty things on the outside of the fence, to see if that will stop him before he goes in! I am also going to try a havahart trap. Only time will tell!

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November 12, 20100 found this helpful

Go get hair at the local salon or salons. We give lots free to people for their gardens.

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Answer this Question...

One of my favorite cooking ingredients is fresh herbs. I've grown many different kinds over the years: rosemary, parsley, thyme, oregano, mint, chives, sage, basil, dill, and more. All have proved hardy enough to withstand the outdoors year round, even insects, here in Georgia, but they are usually mangled by reckless squirrels, even when I've grown them in large clay pots on our deck.


At the moment, I'm experimenting with growing 4 varieties indoors in a sunny window, but they will soon be too big for that space. I suppose I could resort to covering them outside with netting, but wonder if there is a better way to protect them. I am looking forward to having your thoughts. Many thanks.


October 1, 20170 found this helpful

Sprinkle with cayenne pepper. It will have to be reapplied after watering or rain.

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January 14, 2014

How do I stop them from entering my yard?

By Thomas K.


January 19, 20140 found this helpful

I use a 410 or a 22...Coyotes do a lot of damage in my area. We farm. They have killed my chickens, ducks, cats, taken down and killed several young calves, taken trash out of the trash barrel, rooted in the garden, torn up my compost pile, and carried of my kids toys and chewed on them. Several years ago a neighbor shot one that was acting strange and it was sent off.


While it tested neg for rabies, it was full of parasites and very sick looking, with stuff running from its eyes. You don't want them in your yard.
Depending on your state, try your local conservation agent for suggestions, as well as your local county extension office for ideas.
Good luck.

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March 23, 2018

This is a page about protecting tomato plants from animals. We are not the only ones who enjoy a delicious tomato. Deer and even squirrels will help themselves to your garden produce. Depending on who is nibbling, there are different measures you can take to discourage your unwelcome dinner guests.

A tomato plant with yellow flowers.

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July 16, 2013

This is a page about keeping squirrels out of a vegetable garden. Has your vegetable garden become the salad bowl for the local squirrel population? If so, then you are probably looking for a way to keep them out.

A squirrel eating a pumpkin in a vegetable garden.

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ThriftyFun is one of the longest running frugal living communities on the Internet. These are archives of older discussions.

March 25, 2010

How can I keep the animals away from my vegetable plants?

Hardiness Zone: 7a

By fatbarda ahmeti from Randolph, NJ


Keeping Animals Out of Your Vegetable Garden

I don't know this from first-hand experience, but I have heard that many people plant marigolds around the edge; rabbits, etc. don't like the smell and stay away. (06/25/2009)

By Mary

Comment Was this helpful? Yes

November 6, 2010

What is the best way to keep rabbits out of your tomatoes?

Hardiness Zone: 2a

By Darlene from Milton, ON, Canada


Keeping Animals Out of Your Vegetable Garden

Plant marigolds around your garden. Rabbits can't stand the odor of the flowers. Works for me every time! (06/07/2010)

By Darlene Schaefer

Keeping Animals Out of Your Vegetable Garden

You don't say how big the garden area is. One thought is to buy some wooden stakes or make your own about 3 feet long and bang them into the ground around the garden. Buy some chicken wire and make a fence attaching the wire to the stakes. Place some rocks around the bottom to prevent the rabbits from digging under then wire fence. Or you could buy a Havahart trap, bait the trap and when you trap a rabbit take it about 10 miles or so away and release the rabbit if that is the critter doing the damage. (06/08/2010)

By Deanj

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August 10, 2010

What non chemical method can be used to keep deer and cats out of the vegetable and the flower beds?

By florine from Hyattsville, MD


What is a Natural Remedy for Keeping Animals Out of My Gardens?

I sprinkle black pepper on the soil periodically (it doesn't rain much here, so that is a factor for you to adjust for). It works for skunks and cats, not sure about deer. (05/02/2010)

By De

What is a Natural Remedy for Keeping Animals Out of My Gardens?

Human hair clippings, and, I know it's gross, but a big time farmer told me human urine around the garden. It has to be replaced every few day. He says he puts it in cups. (05/03/2010)

By Angel S Jones

What is a Natural Remedy for Keeping Animals Out of My Gardens?

Cats hate citrus. Place some orange/lemon/grapefruit peels (or even pieces) around your garden. This is also a great tip for keeping cats away from your Christmas tree. You can also spray lemon scented water around. The cats won't like it one bit. Sorry I can't help you with the deer though.

Thank you for trying to solve your problem without using anything toxic to animals. Some people will tell you to use moth balls, but moth balls will kill a cat and are very toxic. (05/06/2010)

By Lynn

Comment Was this helpful? Yes

June 6, 2010

What is a cheap way to keep wildlife (rabbits,chipmunks, etc.) out of my vegetable garden? I want to keep them from eating all my produce? I do love animals.

Has anyone heard of using certain brands of soap shavings to keep wildlife (rabbits) away from produce? Or is that snakes? I know mothballs work great for keeping snakes away from preferred areas. They stink, though.

By Trudy from woods of PA


Keeping Animals Out of Your Vegetable Garden

I use the dog hair I capture when I brush my dogs. Gather as much as you can and spread it out round the garden/beds. This worked great for me! (03/26/2010)

By Susanne

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June 25, 2009

How do I keep animals from eating my garden?

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