Squirrels in the Vegetable Garden

Asked June 4, 2020, 7:33 AM EDT

How do you keep squirrels from eating vegetables out of garden? We were thinking of building a crop cage/vegetable enclosure, but is there any other way to keep them out and/or deter them? The squirrels have been ravaging my vegetables before they have time to ripen.

Prince George's County Maryland

1 Response

One old gardening trick is to sprinkle powdered lime on tomatoes or other vegetables to make them unpalatable to squirrels. Only dust lightly, as it will need to be reapplied after rains and you don't want to raise the pH too much.

Some folks set up a squirrel feeder of sorts as far from the veggies as possible.

Some people swear by cayenne pepper sprinkled on veggies.

Here is our veggie problems page which may have some ideas you can use (click on wildlife > squirrels): https://extension.umd.edu/hgic/topics/vegetable-problems