How do you keep the squirrels out?

srg215(6b nj)July 17, 2012

They are picking my plants clean of all tomatoes! I've got hardware cloth 2' high and the deer netting overlapping it and going 7' high and deer netting over the top. But they are finding ways in

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Lesuko(5, Boulder CO)

We were told to use tanglefoot tree coating and dust it with cayenne pepper in areas we didn't want squirrels. The resin sticks to their paws and drives them crazy- supposedly. We haven't tried it yet- maybe this weekend. They don't seem to go after our tomatoes so much. But they love our summer and winter squash, berries, etc.

    Bookmark   July 17, 2012 at 1:31PM
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gumby_ct(CT it says Z5)

How big an area are you talkin here? A picture is worth a thousand tips.

    Bookmark   July 17, 2012 at 1:47PM
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Years ago when I had squirrel & chipmunk problems, hot pepper powder was one of the methods I tried with no success.

But...if cayenne pepper does repel your squirrels, why would you sprinkle it on the Tanglefoot resin that you want them to walk through?

    Bookmark   July 17, 2012 at 1:52PM
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srg215(6b nj)

Gumby, here is a pic of the set up, of course the plants are much larger now. It's 12x4

    Bookmark   July 17, 2012 at 2:12PM
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gumby_ct(CT it says Z5)

Rescue a pet dog. :)

Or shop at the Farmer's Market ;)

Your call.

    Bookmark   July 17, 2012 at 3:47PM
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Lesuko(5, Boulder CO)

Rob- that's what we were told. You can make some sort of sticky cayenne pepper solution too- I once found a recipe on the web but didn't try it.

We have a fence that the squirrels scale so we are going to apply it on the fence and maybe spots on our raised beds too.

    Bookmark   July 17, 2012 at 10:45PM
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I had bird netting over mine which seemed to help for a little while. But they figured a way right on through that.
I then started trapping them with Havaheart traps.

Trapped and relocated 16 but they just kept on coming, seemed like more everyday.
Soon they figured out not to go into the traps and it would take about 3-6 days just to trap one.

So I finally after several more tomatoes eaten, all the rest of my blueberries, totally destroying my wife's plants etc I decided to pull out the heavy artillery.

I have taken out 10 of them in the past 3 weeks with my air rifle and it has the added effect of basically throwing a dead body on the dance floor.
I shot one yesterday and that was the only one I have seen in the past week.
He was literally eating my wife's petunia plant like it was a pecan.

The Air Rifle has been the best solution for me so far.
Quick, quiet, easy and at this point, satisfying.

    Bookmark   July 18, 2012 at 8:46AM
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sunnyside1(z6/SW Mo.)

I have an 8 ft bed, a couple large containers, and three or so more tomatoes in a few 4 x 4 raised beds. I have found RepelsAll in a spray bottle (Lowe's $14) does a good job if I reapply it on the soil under the toms once a week or so. It smells terrible! They sure don't like it, nor do the rabbits. I also tied holographic ribbon (Wal-Mart about $1.50) hanging down on several points of the tomato supports. I have enough left for next year as well. The ribbon shimmers in the wind/sun and it really helps. Lastly, with this 100 degree temp every day, I have light insect barrier over the whole bed top and connected to tomato support by clothespins. It blows in the wind and keeps the toms cool and the critters out. Don't forget to keep water in birdbaths and water troughs every day. They get thirsty and look to your fruit for moisture. Oh yes - I pick them when I see a little blush and finish ripening inside.

My neighbor also has the Air Rifle Solution but I don't want to go that route.

    Bookmark   July 18, 2012 at 9:31AM
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Hi April (srg215),

I saw the front of your home on Photobucket.

We are just wondering if the vinyl siding is Tuscon Clay and if the stone is Bucks County Stone.

Just trying to color coordinate.



    Bookmark   April 7, 2013 at 10:50AM
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harveyhorses(7 Midlothian Va)

Lead poisoning and electric fence. If on more person says they only eat your tomatoes when there is a drought, or they need water I will lay down and throw an internet hissyfit. We live on a creek fed pond, they cross the creek to get to my garden. Last year was the worst. They would pick them and leave them on our well or steps to the porch with a nibble or two taken out. I put up chicken wire with electric about two inches above it. I usually have 30 + plants.

    Bookmark   April 8, 2013 at 9:47AM
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Is chicken wire or hardware cloth better to build a barrier?

    Bookmark   April 8, 2013 at 10:23PM
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harveyhorses(7 Midlothian Va)

Unless you cover the entire plant either, or both. Like a hoop structure. They climb anything. I would go with hardware cloth, I don't think they can chew through that.

    Bookmark   April 9, 2013 at 12:03AM
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I know this may sound crazy but try feeding them. I like the air rifle personally but you may be able to get them to eat something else better to their liking away from the plants. I say this becasue I have lots of hickory trees on my property and have never had them in my garden and I know they eat the hickory nuts like mad.

    Bookmark   April 9, 2013 at 1:38PM
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wertach zone 7-B SC

Ditto Moorlord, I have lots of hickory trees on my property also and have never had them in my garden.

But something strange to me, a co-worker has a lot of pecan trees and the squirrels eat his tomatoes! But he picks up the pecans and I leave the hickory nuts for the squirrels.

I think that they may be after them for the water, we have had drought conditions for a long time here. I told him to put out a bowl of water for them this year and see if it helps.

    Bookmark   April 9, 2013 at 4:01PM
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I read a tip on another website......grate Irish Spring soap through the beds. I am going to try it, its worth a try!

    Bookmark   April 10, 2013 at 12:18AM
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Lesuko(5, Boulder CO)

There is a post on this site about someone who bought a Costco sized Irish Spring Soap package to sprinkle through his garden. In short, it didn't work and it took him years to use up all the soap. I would continue searching that idea to see if it actually worked for anyone.

    Bookmark   April 10, 2013 at 11:08AM
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