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Keep Wildlife Away From Gardens

The National Agricultural Statistics Service (NASS) reported wildlife damage to U.S. agriculture at $944 million during 2001. Field crop losses to wildlife totaled $619 million and losses of vegetables, fruits, and nuts totaled $146 million.

Deer are the number one complaint from growers at garden nurseries and farms. But, deer aren't the only wild animal causing damage to organic gardens.

In the United States, these animals are causing the most agricultural damage:

  • White-tailed deer (94% reported by farmers)
  • Wild Hogs (61%) 
  • Coyotes (33%)
  • Raccoons (30%)
  • Armadillos (19%)
  • Rabbits (10%)

    In addition to the use of deer fencing and rodent barriers, growers are encouraged to plant flowers and herbs that these animals hate eating and smelling. Wildlife are picky eaters, just like you and I; and they will turn their noses away from certain tastes and odors. 

    Plants For Deer Resistance

    Verbena Aster
    Mint Lavender
    Daffodils Marigolds
    Black-Eyed Susan Hibiscus
    Oregano Thyme
    Cayenne Pepper Rosemary
    Basil Garlic

    Trees To Plant For Deer Resistance

     White Spruce Colorado Blue Spruce
    Ginkgo Red Maple
    River Birch Dawn Redwood
    Black Tupelo  Tulip Poplar
    American Holly American Persimmon
    American Sweetgum  Flowering Dogwood
    Pond Cypress Southern Magnolia

    Fencing recommendation: 7.5-8' feet high. Plastic or metal depending on amount of deer pressure.

    Plants For Feral Pig Resistance

     Petunias Pansies
    Geraniums Pepper Flakes (least effective from list)

    Fencing recommendation: 3-4' feet high steel fence for wild hogs.

    Plants For Coyote/Wolf Resistance

    Unfortunately, coyotes are not picky eaters; and they will eat small/medium sized game including rabbits, deer, fish, frogs and insects as well as pets!

    Fencing recommendation: 6' feet tall, metal fence.

    Plants For Armadillo Resistance

     Ammonia - leave a saucer full of this liquid. Raccoons and armadillos hate the smell of ammonia; and they will run away after a brief sniff. 
    Mothballs - place around the yard. The smell is fatal to raccoons

    Fencing recommendation: 2-3' feet high, steel material. Armadillos do not jump; but they burrow. Bury the metal fence at least 12-18 inches for best results.

    Plants For Rabbit Resistance

     Azalea Daffodils
    Snapdragon Sunflowers
    Tomatoes Peppers
    Basil Asparagus
    Geraniums Begonia
    Cleome Marigold

    Fencing recommendation: 2-3' feet high, steel material. Stop burrowing by burying the fence at least 6 inches into the ground.