The Q&A Archives: Raccoons In My Garden

Question: I just bought a house in a rural area where I've seen several raccoons eating our garbage. I am in the middle of planting my first vegetable garden and I'm afraid of these raccoons getting in there and destroying my plants. I heard that pouring ground pepper around the vegetables will deter the raccoons since they don't like the smell. Is this true? If not, is there anything I can use to keep the raccoons away? HELP!!!

Answer: Some gardeners report success using repellents such as hot pepper wax or other commercial sprays, however raccoons are very persistent pests. In my experience it is more dependable in the long run to either fence them out using electrified fencing or to trap and remove them. Since they can carry rabies, it is sometimes advisable to do that. You might want to consult with your local animal control and/or game commission for advice.

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