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Name: Kari Walker
Hermosa Beach California
Do What You Absolutely Love To Do.
Puppet2
Feb 18, 2017 11:53 AM CST
How do I keep squirrels from eating all the seeds in my sunflowers?
It seems obvious to use netting but it did not work. Neither did a 10 foot fence.
Name: Elaine
Sarasota, Fl
The one constant in life is change
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dyzzypyxxy
Feb 18, 2017 12:50 PM CST
That's so right about the fence. Squirrels can climb just about anything. About the only effective thing I've found to deter them is to patrol the area in person about once per hour during daylight to scare them off. Shouting, clapping and cursing *Blush* Angel (yes, my neighbors think I'm a nut) also help. A dog or a cat can help too, but not with very tall sunflowers. I'd think the squirrel would feel pretty safe on top of a 12ft. stalk.

If your sunflowers are in an open area, a motion detector sprinkler might be helpful. They're available on Amazon. They'll also help keep the birds away.

My squirrel problem is with keeping them away from my mangoes. The motion of the foliage in the wind sets off the sprinkler, so it's going nearly all the time, which means it doesn't work to scare them off.
Elaine

"Success is stumbling from failure to failure with no loss of enthusiasm." โ€“Winston Churchill
Name: Anne
Summerville, SC (Zone 8a)
Only dead fish go with the flow!
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Xeramtheum
Feb 18, 2017 12:58 PM CST
I wonder if a couple of layers of panty hose on the seed heads might slow them down?
"The world is a dangerous place to live; not because of the people who are evil, but because of the people who don't do anything about it."

Albert Einstein
Name: Rob Duval
Mason, New Hampshire (Zone 5b)
Region: New Hampshire Vegetable Grower Daylilies Celebrating Gardening: 2015 Garden Ideas: Level 1 Tomato Heads
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robertduval14
Feb 18, 2017 1:12 PM CST

Plants Admin

They are not fond of being shot in the ass with a bb gun or air soft gun... just sayin'.
Name: greene
Savannah, GA (Sunset 28) (Zone 8b)
Dreams don't work unless you do.
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greene
Feb 18, 2017 1:13 PM CST
This is a random idea, untested.
I have read that squirrels don't dig in an area where the gardener has placed orange/citrus peels, coffe grounds and/or human hair. Also, squirrels avoid areas frequented by dogs or cats.
So, here is my idea. Go ahead and place a layer of netting over the seed head. Then add another layer of netting with some citrus peels inside, or human hair, or cat/dog hair. Spread coffee grounds around the base of the plant.
Hope someone can test my idea to see if it will work. Crossing Fingers!
Sunset Zone 28, AHS Heat Zone 9, USDA zone 8b~~"Leaf of Faith"
Name: Anne
Summerville, SC (Zone 8a)
Only dead fish go with the flow!
Plant and/or Seed Trader Birds Cat Lover Greenhouse Tropicals Bulbs
Garden Ideas: Master Level Garden Sages Butterflies Bee Lover Enjoys or suffers cold winters Seed Starter
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Xeramtheum
Feb 18, 2017 1:42 PM CST
You're my kind of a guy Rob.
"The world is a dangerous place to live; not because of the people who are evil, but because of the people who don't do anything about it."

Albert Einstein
Name: Rob Duval
Mason, New Hampshire (Zone 5b)
Region: New Hampshire Vegetable Grower Daylilies Celebrating Gardening: 2015 Garden Ideas: Level 1 Tomato Heads
Annuals Hostas Lover of wildlife (Black bear badge) Spiders! Dog Lover Region: Northeast US
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robertduval14
Feb 18, 2017 2:04 PM CST

Plants Admin

@Greene, Well I can tell you that dog/cat hair is useless. I have bird feeders inside my dogs fenced in area and they are not bothered by that fact in the least, unless, of course, the dog happens to be outside at that moment...
Name: Cindy
Hobart, IN zone 5
aka CindyMzone5
Celebrating Gardening: 2015 Plant Identifier
Shadegardener
Feb 18, 2017 2:26 PM CST
What about motion-activated sprinklers?
Only when the last tree has died and the last river has been poisoned and the last fish has been caught will we realize that we can't eat money. Cree proverb
Name: Rick Moses
Derwood, MD (Zone 7b)
Region: Mid-Atlantic Region: Maryland Plant and/or Seed Trader Hostas Ferns Garden Photography
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RickM
Feb 18, 2017 5:30 PM CST
Kari, when you say 'netting', are you referring to what they sell that has openings that are at least 1"x1" square? If so, there is no way that will keep out a squirrel.

Instead, try using nylon netting that you get at the craft/fabric store. It's a fine mesh. The squirrel will have to actually tear through the netting to get at the seeds. But, the netting also allows air and water to pass through with ease.

I now cover all newly planted areas with this netting. It keeps out both squirrel and deer. Hurray!

Below is a picture of what I'm talking about. It also comes in a wide variety of colors.

Thumb of 2017-02-18/RickM/e71076 Thumb of 2017-02-18/RickM/788d7f

And with spring coming, you may be able to get it on sale/clearance. When we had a fabric store closing in our area a couple of years ago, I bought up all of the black, brown and dark green.

Name: Philip Becker
Fresno California (Zone 8a)
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Philipwonel
Feb 20, 2017 2:55 PM CST
I know ๐Ÿ˜!!! I know ๐Ÿ˜!!!
You need something they can't climb !!!
About ?๐Ÿ˜•? 2 foot long piece of sheet metal or plastic. That you can wrap around stalk. It will need to be completely slick. There widdow claws cant get a grip on , also , tall enough so they cant jump to top. Im guessing 2 feet high ???

I'll bet a dollar to a penny !!! ๐Ÿ˜
๐Ÿ˜Ž๐Ÿ˜Ž๐Ÿ˜Ž
Anything i say, could be misrepresented, or wrong.
Name: Elaine
Sarasota, Fl
The one constant in life is change
Cat Lover Master Gardener: Florida Tropicals Multi-Region Gardener Vegetable Grower Region: Florida
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dyzzypyxxy
Feb 20, 2017 3:56 PM CST
Oh, they sure can jump more than 2ft. high, Phil. Even sheet metal might not be slick enough to deter them, unless you also grease it. I have a bird feeder on top of a metal pole, and unless I grease the pole fairly often, they can still climb it.
Elaine

"Success is stumbling from failure to failure with no loss of enthusiasm." โ€“Winston Churchill
Name: Cindy
Hobart, IN zone 5
aka CindyMzone5
Celebrating Gardening: 2015 Plant Identifier
Shadegardener
Feb 20, 2017 4:23 PM CST
We use the metal Slinkies on bird feeder poles. I have 3 different type of squirrels here and none of them can climb a Slinky.
Only when the last tree has died and the last river has been poisoned and the last fish has been caught will we realize that we can't eat money. Cree proverb
Name: greene
Savannah, GA (Sunset 28) (Zone 8b)
Dreams don't work unless you do.
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greene
Feb 20, 2017 5:23 PM CST
Shadegardener said:We use the metal Slinkies on bird feeder poles. I have 3 different type of squirrels here and none of them can climb a Slinky.


That idea deserved an acorn tip!!! Hurray! Thank You!


I looked for youTube videos to see this in action and yes, it is a winner!
https://www.youtube.com/watch?...

Sunset Zone 28, AHS Heat Zone 9, USDA zone 8b~~"Leaf of Faith"
Name: Rick Moses
Derwood, MD (Zone 7b)
Region: Mid-Atlantic Region: Maryland Plant and/or Seed Trader Hostas Ferns Garden Photography
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RickM
Feb 20, 2017 5:33 PM CST
I never thought about a slinky! Now, where can you get a metal slinky these days that doesn't cost a lot?
Name: greene
Savannah, GA (Sunset 28) (Zone 8b)
Dreams don't work unless you do.
Bookworm Vermiculture Garden Ideas: Master Level Region: Georgia Plant Identifier Rabbit Keeper
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greene
Feb 20, 2017 6:51 PM CST
https://www.amazon.com/dp/B00000IZKW/
Sunset Zone 28, AHS Heat Zone 9, USDA zone 8b~~"Leaf of Faith"
Name: Sandy B.
Ford River, Michigan UP (Zone 4b)
(Zone 4b-maybe 5a)
Charter ATP Member Celebrating Gardening: 2015 I was one of the first 300 contributors to the plant database! I helped beta test the first seed swap Garden Sages Million Pollinator Garden Challenge
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Weedwhacker
Feb 20, 2017 7:59 PM CST
Maybe you could fashion a cover for the sunflower using "hardware cloth" -- the squirrels wouldn't be able to chew through that (and the birds wouldn't be able to get the seeds, either -- if you're trying to save them for yourself).
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Name: Mac
Over yonder, IL (Zone 6b)
Ex zones 4b, 8b, 9a, 9b
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McCannon
Feb 20, 2017 8:10 PM CST
We don't grow sunflowers but we do have lots of squirrels. We also broadcast a lot of birdseed, including sunflower seed and never have a problem with them in the garden. The only thing they're really hard on are the suet plug feeders. And, yes, they can go right up a greased pole, like greased lightning Hilarious! . Everything I read about slinkies is that the new ones aren't worth a darn. Shrug!
I intend to live forever. So far, so good. - Anonymous
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Name: Sally
central Maryland
Seriously addicted to kettle chips.
Charter ATP Member Native Plants and Wildflowers Region: Mid-Atlantic Composter Region: Maryland Birds
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sallyg
Feb 20, 2017 9:07 PM CST
squirrels always find sunflower seed in my bird feeders, I think they would chew through nylon to get at sunflower seed.
Hot pepper spray?
..come into the peace of wild things..-Wendell Berry
Life is a buffet (anon)
Name: Rick Moses
Derwood, MD (Zone 7b)
Region: Mid-Atlantic Region: Maryland Plant and/or Seed Trader Hostas Ferns Garden Photography
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RickM
Feb 21, 2017 6:55 AM CST
Unrelated, but related....

We have a really stupid squirrel this year. While working the yard yesterday, I notices a bunch of twigs in one of my rhododendron. The closer I looked, the more there were. All of them chewed off at one end. I'm convinced there's a really stupid squirrel trying to build a nest in the oak tree above. I ended up with a piles of twigs 4 feet high and 3 feet around and nothing in the tree. Stupid squirrel.
Name: Cindy
Hobart, IN zone 5
aka CindyMzone5
Celebrating Gardening: 2015 Plant Identifier
Shadegardener
Feb 22, 2017 8:10 AM CST
Greene - thanks!
RickM/Mac - we get metal Slinkies at a toy store. Don't get plastic ones. We've had ours for several years with no problems. They're used year round.
Only when the last tree has died and the last river has been poisoned and the last fish has been caught will we realize that we can't eat money. Cree proverb

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