The Q&A Archives: Rabbits

Question: My yard has lots of rabbits in and around it. I am starting my first garden and want to keep them from eating my plants, what should I do? I've heard that you can use cayenne pepper, does that really work?

Answer: There are a number of animal repellent sprays that would help deter rabbits. 'Get Away' and 'Deer Away' are available from Burpee. 'Deer Away' is efffective in deterring deer and rabbits and lasts 7-10 days without washing off. Natural scent repellents such as coyote and fox urine are also available from Burpee. Fencing is also a deterrent. To be most effective, a 1" chicken wire fence needs to be 2 feet high and buried at least 6 inches deep around your flowers. Consider also interplanting with garlic, onions, Mexican marigold or Dusty Miller. Bunnies tend not to like their aroma. Also, you can make your own animal repellent mixture by mixing a few teaspoons of cayenne pepper, and a dash of soap in a quart of water. Spray on the plants you want to protect. Once the growth is a few weeks old, the rabbits shouldn't be interested anymore. You can try to scare rabbits from your garden by burying empty pop bottles with the tops poking up a few inches above the ground. The eerie whistle that results when the wind blows can scare them away. Sprinkling blood meal, ground hot peppers or human or dog hair around plants is also sometimes effective.

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