The Q&A Archives: How To Rid Garden Of Moles

Question: I have several flower beds around my yard, with various types of plants in them. Unfortunately they don't live long because moles eat the roots off the plants before they can grow big. How can I remove the moles from the beds and stop them from coming back?

Answer: Moles feed on grubs and earthworms living in your lawn or garden. The damage they do is a physical disturbance of plant roots while they are tunneling. By controlling the grubs, you may be able to decrease mole activity. Beneficial nematodes and/or milky spore are two controls; both are available from Gardener's Supply, 800-863-1700; web site These controls can take a season to work, so you may want to take more immediate steps as well.

There are several ways to try to get rid of moles. Your first task in eliminating moles is to determine which of their runways are active. You can do this be tramping down areas of raised soil that indicate tunneling. The tunnels that are raised a day later are active.

You can purchase mole traps at a local hardware store and set them in or over (depending on the type of trap) the active runways.

As you know, more moles will return at a later time. Some gardeners have had good luck keeping them out by trenching around the area they wish to protect and burying an "underground fence" of small mesh hardware cloth.

This is quite a chore since it needs to extend about 18" below the surface. And make sure you don't fence any inside the compound!

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