squirrel trouble - Knowledgebase Question

chicago, Il
Question by lynn_m_foley
April 5, 2010
There is a squirrel digging in my small city garden. I planted flowers, the squirrel is digging them up and putting holes everywhere. Anything I can do to get rid of it?

Answer from NGA
April 5, 2010


Squirrels, bless their cute little hearts, can really be a pain in the neck for gardeners. They are quite enterprising and may find their way under, or through, a netting cover. I would give it a try anyway. Another option would be to spray the plants with a hot pepper spray. There are several brands on the market. These sprays contain capsacin, the compound that makes peppers hot. It is used in some of the suet cakes made for birds to discourage squirrel from eating them. I have found it to be an effective squirrel feeding deterrent. You will likely have to reapply the spray often. Perhaps mixing it in a spray bottle for easy application to individual plants would be best. Once they get a hot mouthful a few times they may decide to look elsewhere for munchies. If this doesn't work, you may need to cage your plants with hardware cloth or chicken wire. Be sure to bury it 6 inches into the ground and bring the top wires together to fully enclose each plant (or the entire garden bed!) Best wishes with your garden.

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