does garlic repel animals?

jadeite(6/7)April 3, 2013

I came across something in a garden magazine. It was something that was supposed to be concentrated garlic, in (or on) a spike. You are supposed to put these spikes around your vegetables to deter rabbits. Has anyone tried this?

We have a lot of rabbits around the area. They jump the wall and eat the tomatoes, apples, lots of ornamentals, and grass. We also have flocks of quail who jump over the wall and eat everything in sight. All the annuals I started were eaten, as well as many perennials and shrubs. Will they eat the garlic? Can I use garlic to deter them? I grew garlic chives last year. Between the rabbits and quail, they ate this down to the ground.


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Deer and other animals won't eat the garlic, but they will still eat other stuff if it happens to smell good to them. I would suggest spraying some home-made stuff such as a mix of eggs, milk, wilt pruf and a bit of dish soap should keep them away for a while.

Hanging some bounce sheets should also last if you are protecting small trees and shrubs, but a simpler solution is to use deer netting as they don't appear smart enough to charge through it. They are pretty dumb.

I attached a blog post show deer netting used on my luffa gourds which deer love, but they don't appear smart enough to get to them.

Here is a link that might be useful: lots of luffa

    Bookmark   April 3, 2013 at 10:38PM
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stevelau - that's quite a luffa orchard you have. The wall keeps deer from coming into the garden. We have fruit trees outside the wall, and those keep the deer happy. Rabbits will tunnel under a fence to get to anything edible. They're starting to appear around the house so I'm keeping an eye on the garlic shoots. If they don't eat them, perhaps I'll make up some kind of garlic spray for the rest of the garden.


    Bookmark   April 4, 2013 at 9:10AM
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I once visited a lady who had beautiful old oak trees in her yard that were home to a teeming population of squirrels. Like your rabbits, they ate everything. Her solution was to build a lath house covered with chicken wire -- like a wood-framed greenhouse, but the whole thing was enclosed in chicken wire. She grew the most beautiful tomatoes.

She chose not to modify the habitat of her problem animals, but my first question is ... can anything be done to get rid of the rabbits? Get a terrier dog to show you where they are living, and take it from there.

    Bookmark   April 5, 2013 at 8:45AM
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planatus - we are in New Mexico, at the base of the mountains. Part of the reason we live here is because of the wildness which includes wild animals - bears, bobcats, coyotes, deer, many species of birds and unfortunately rabbits, pack rats and snakes. So getting rid of the rabbits is not an option. The best I can hope for is to keep them out of the walled garden. We don't grow many vegetables because it's a lost cause. If it turns out that garlic repels rabbits, I may try to distribute it around the beds just to deter them.

I've put spiky branches around the garlic chives and we have a fence around the garlic crop. Baby rabbits have started to appear everywhere so we'll see if the garlic stays safe.


    Bookmark   April 5, 2013 at 9:15AM
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gemini_jim(7 MD)

The garlic itself should be safe, but I doubt it will deter rabbits from eating other plants. They are used to foraging in mixed vegetation and picking out what they like.

    Bookmark   April 5, 2013 at 10:40AM
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