How to Keep Rodents out of the Garden

Last Updated on June 20, 2023 by Ellen Christian

Are you wondering how to keep rodents out of the garden? Here are a few ways that we keep mice, moles, and voles out of our gardens.

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a mouse eating a plant in the garden

Keep Rodents out of the Garden

We have a vegetable, herb, and flower garden and it seems like they attract a fair share of rodents during the summer. Since rodents can bring diseases with them, that’s not something I really want to encourage.

While we don’t mind birds and animals visiting our garden and even nibbling on the occasional zucchini, we don’t want to lose our entire crop.

So, how can you keep rodents out of the garden? Rodents can include a variety of different animals like mice, rats, squirrels, porcupines, and gophers.

Not only do these animals eat the plants and vegetables you’re trying to grow, they often make burrows and tunnels underneath your garden which can destroy the root system and leave your lawn a mess of holes and bumps.

There are several DIY methods for ridding yourself of mice and other rodents. Here are a few that I’ve found really work.

Are you wondering how to keep rodents out of the garden? Here are a few ways that we keep mice, moles, and voles out of our gardens.

Remove their shelter

This can be a challenge in the country. But, pay special attention to remove brush piles, compost piles, large areas of tall grasses, and scrap wood.

All of these can provide shelter for rodents which will encourage them to stay in your yard.

a gopher near his hole

Use live traps

If you’re wondering how to eliminate rats in the garden, larger animals can be caught in live traps. Check with the laws in your town and state about how they should be disposed of once you’ve caught them.

Some places allow you to transport them to other areas. Others do not. This is one of the ways to keep rodents out of the garden that you will need to check on first.

Plant peppermint

Mint is a natural rodent repellent. They do not like the way it smells and will avoid it. Be sure to plant mint around the borders of your garden or the area that rodents are most attracted to.

Mint is aggressive and will have to be kept in check or it will take over your garden. Other plants that keep rats away include spearmint and marigolds.

green plants with a purple flower

Rodent repeller

You can place a solar-powered rodent repeller in your garden. This makes a noise that only rodents and small animals hear and will encourage them to avoid the area.

Make sure that you check the reviews before you choose the specific one you want to use to keep rodents out of the garden. This one is solar and easy to install.

Are you wondering how to keep rodents out of the garden? Here are a few ways that we keep mice, moles, and voles out of our gardens.

Keep rodents out of the garden by not mulching

I know that mulch is helpful to keep down weeds and that it helps hold moisture into the soil. Unfortunately, it also encourages rodents to come to visit and make their home in your garden.

Try using stones instead which won’t be as attractive.

This is one of the easiest ways to keep rodents out of the garden.

white flowers growing out of rock bedding

Keep rodents out of the garden with Irish Spring

This is an old trick from back when my parents gardened. You can chop up Irish Spring Soap and crumble it around your garden.

The rodents don’t like the way it smells. You will have to replace it eventually depending on how much rain you get.

It’s not possible to have a completely rat proof garden, but with these suggestions, you should be able to discourage them from visiting.

Do you know of any other ways to keep rodents out of the garden?

Here are some mouse traps you can make at home.

yellow and orange marigold

What can I plant to keep rats away?

How can I keep rodents out of the garden? Try a few of these plants.

  • Marigolds
  • Rosemary
  • Peppermint
  • Lavender
  • Onions
  • Grape Hyacinth
  • Garlic Daffodils

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19 thoughts on “How to Keep Rodents out of the Garden”

  1. I, over the winter had an invasion of moles that got under my flagstone patio. As they tunneled, they carried all the fine gravel up through the spaces between the stone and have made a real mess. How do I get rid of them??
  2. Help. I have mice in my van! I am not afraid to use a kill trap, and have caught as many as 2 a day. They rob the traps! I come out to check, and there are 2 empty traps with no mice. They've been in there most of the winter - you don't want to know about the mess, or the smell. I'm using peanut butter as bait. We've given up on vegetables - the squirrels take even the ghost peppers. The rabbits chewed all my lilies down to the ground, the skunks and raccoons dig up the lawn for grubs, the woodchucks want to live under the house - and this is in suburbia on the Island of Montreal in Quebec, Canada.
    • If you want to keep them out of your van, I suggest plugging up any holes that allow them access. Then, leave cotton balls with peppermint essential oil in areas they frequent. They hate the smell, and this should encourage them to leave. As far as the animals in the garden, I have a few suggestions in the article. It's so difficult to keep the animals away from flowers and vegetables. You can try scattering mothballs around or planting things they don't like.
  3. the moles in Mississippi are horrible and destroy everything from rose bushes to tomatoes. I am going to try the soap and see if it helps.

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