Disappearing Irish Spring Soap

Asked July 10, 2019, 1:23 PM EDT

I live in front of a steam in Columbia, MD. The deer have been eating my hosta, arbovite, purple cone flowers, yarrow and many other plants. A couple weeks ago I placed cubes of Irish Spring Soap in old panty hose feet and staple gunned the hose to old paint sticks. I then hammered about six of them in the ground near the plants the deer are eating. So far, the deer haven't been back but a few days after placement every single paint stick and wrapped soap was gone. I placed four more and the next day they were gone. There are never kids in my yard. What could be stealing these sticks? Possibly rats? Thanks! Linda

Howard County Maryland

1 Response

That is a tough question to answer.
We don't have research to share about this.
Anecdotally it seems rats and mice may have interest in Irish Spring, especially if you get the one with aloe in it instead of the regular scent.
They would gnaw, but doubtful as far as carrying it away.
Maybe racoons who are bigger and have great dexterity?

You might pose the question to the Wildlife Hotline run by the MD Department of Natural Resources (DNR).
You can find that number within this page: https://extension.umd.edu/sites/extension.umd.edu/files/_docs/programs/hgic/HGIC_Pubs/wildlife/HG90%...