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Natural rabbit and squirrel deterents?

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tkiawolf
Joined: 5/12/2006
Location:
Posts: 1
Posted: May/12/2006 1:01 AM PST

My wife and I recently started annual flowers and Herbs from seeds in peat pellets. They started great, but when we planted them , a few days later they had been dug up and the pellets ripped apart. The most frustrating thig is they didn't even eat the plants. We have started a new crop, but would like to do something environmentaly friendly to keep the critters from doing the same thing again. Can anyone give us some tips before we plant again? Thanks in advance for any advice! Have an awesome day
sassmuffin blog photos
Joined: 2/16/2004
Location: west allis wisconsin
Posts: 892
Posted: May/12/2006 11:26 AM PST

There is a thread around here somewhere for critter control, but here are some suggestions. Pepper spray, either commercially sold or homemade, there are products made from fox unrine in sprays, I use moth balls and moth ball flakes, only draw back is the smell of the naphthalene. I'm sure someone can drop by with the critter control thread link, I'm not really feeling myself today to find it.....hope this gives you a start. Oh yeah., Welcome

Sass
jgardener
Joined: 8/12/2005
Location:
Posts: 106
Posted: May/13/2006 4:25 AM PST

As a chemist, I would hesitate to put naphthalene in even an ornamental garden.

Try coffee grounds; I never have, and would like to know if they work.

I am engaged in a battle with chipmunks myself, and I can tell you that even a feral cat and a very large dog are not a perfect deterrent.

I have had some luck with a vile little concoction:
soak ground black pepper in white distilled vinegar and vegetable oil at least overnight [my stock is about three years old; I just keep adding to it];
dilute it about 10 to 25 to 100 in more vinegar in a cheap spray bottle [let that sit at least overnight so the nozzle doesn't clog];
spray this on all your hard scape regularly.
Notes:
You want to spray ONLY the vinegar fraction; that will be the bottom layer.
The specified ingredients are the cheapest; white pepper, red wine vinegar, and first press extra virgin olive oil probably work as well.
I use mine in the evening when I get home from work [no direct sunlight] as I wander through the garden.

I have heard of a vegetable garden technique that you might be able to use until the bed is established; put flexible fencing around the bed, bury the bottom at least six inches, and [this is very important] leave the top of the fence unsecured. If a critter tries to scale the fence, it will not be able to get over the top as it bends back.
sassmuffin blog photos
Joined: 2/16/2004
Location: west allis wisconsin
Posts: 892
Posted: May/14/2006 11:11 AM PST

I drop a few of the moth balls every few inches along the borders of the beds, and sprinkle along the borders. I put one or two in the containers and have never had any adverse reaction. I got the idea from The Wisconsin Gardener's Guide.

Sass
jgardener
Joined: 8/12/2005
Location:
Posts: 106
Posted: May/15/2006 12:46 AM PST

I respond only to inform, not to argue.

Here are some links to on-line Material Safety Data Sheets [MSDSs] for naphthalene.

http://www.uiowa.edu/~chemsafe/MSDS/Naphthalene .htm
http://www.jtbaker.com/msds/englishhtml/n0090.h tm
http://www.uiowa.edu/~chemsafe/MSDS/Naphthalene .htm

Apparently, it does break down fairly quickly, but bioaccumulation does occur. It is a hazardous waste, and a suspected carcinogen.

Some people still believe that anything for general sale can not be very harmful or dangerous; this is not true.

If a chemical works on a pest [insect, weed, or rodent] is is probably damned dangerous.
Leeia
Joined: 3/29/2010
Location: New Jersey
Posts: 1
Posted: Mar/29/2010 6:20 AM PST

Thanks so much for the information. I'm getting ready to start my first vegetable garden and am concerned about the squirrels and maybe birds. I was looking for a natural deterent pepper and vinegar sounds good. I don't understand the oil part unless that makes the pepper and vinegar take hold of the plant? The other part of your message unclear to me was:

dilute it about 10 to 25 to 100 in more vinegar in a cheap spray bottle ;
spray this on all your hard scape regularly. WHAT DO YOU MEAN HARD SCAPE?

Thanks!
carolyncat353 blog photos
Joined: 4/29/2008
Location: Westlake, La
Posts: 10091
Posted: Mar/29/2010 7:05 AM PST

The person who posted that is apparently no longer a member. I'm assuming he/she means, spray the area around your plantings. I'm no chemist, and the ratios may downplay vinegar's ability to kill the plants, but vinegar used in strong solutions will kill a plant. Use only on the area surrounding.
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