Rabbits are adorable little creatures, but once they discover your garden, they aren’t so appealing anymore. That’s because rabbits love to eat the tender shoots and new veggies in your garden patch, and they do it very quickly. In fact, a rabbit can do a lot of damage in a short period of time! And since there is always more than one rabbit hanging around, you are bound to lose a great deal of your garden if you don’t take steps to deter rabbits from your garden now. Here's all you need to know about rabbit deterrent, like using repellents, fencing and growing certain plants in garden.
Use Repellents to Deter Rabbits in Garden
Some fertilizers work very well to keep rabbits at bay. Things that are made with bone meal or blood meal are especially effective, as they are distasteful to the rabbits, who are natural herbivores. This type of fertilizer is also very good for your garden, so applying it every few weeks should be a good practice for the season.
These repellents might have harsher ingredients, so double-check the label to make sure you can use it on your tender garden plants. These work for a short period of time, and need to be reapplied often. Ammonium soaps are a common type of commercial repellent.
Spreading certain things around your plants can make the whole area distasteful to rabbits. These include cayenne pepper sprayed over the plants, human hair or dog hair spread on the ground, and even manure used as compost. Spraying the veggies with a combination of water and vinegar, as well as a dash of hot sauce, can keep the rabbits away.
If your garden is filled with flowers and other ornamental plants, you can use a bitrex solution. These are not good for use on vegetable plants, because the taste of the veggies will be affected.
Rabbits use their nose to tell them what’s good and what’s not, and that’s why dried sulfur or onions can keep them away. They hate the smell of these things, and they will scamper away if they detect them in your garden.
More rabbit deterrents
Remember to always choose a deterrent that is safe to use around pets and kids. The last thing you want to do is poison your family or those you love, just to get rid of the rabbits! Watch the following video to learn how to deter rabbits with spices:
Make Adjustments in Your Garden
By simply making some changes in your garden, you can make it a place where rabbits don’t want to go. One of the most effective rabbit deterrents for your garden is cutting down the brush and high grasses near the garden. The rabbit will then have to cross a wide open area in order to get your vegetables, and that puts them at risk for predators. Rabbits will typically try to go to a garden where they can get to the plants without exposing themselves.
Seal up holes where rabbits might find shelter, such as underneath your deck. You can also put fences around your water sources, as well as around your garden itself, to make them work harder to get to those things – many rabbits will give up and go elsewhere.
Grow Plants That Deter Rabbits
Rabbits will eat almost anything when food is scarce. But when food is plentiful, they are very selective, and you can take advantage of this by planting only those things that you know rabbits really don’t find tasty. These include plants such as forget-me-nots, impatiens and cineraria. Plant perennials such as coral bells, cornflower, bleeding heart, bee balm and day lily.
Groundcovers like potato vine and English ivy will deter rabbits. So will certain trees, such as the magnolia, oak, scrub pine, redbud, cedars and maples. If you have a vegetable garden, look into planting herbs amongst the plants. These might include lavender, holly, rosemary, Mexican sage, lilac and boxwood.
Invest in Proper Fencing and Barriers
Fencing in your garden can be a great rabbit deterrent, but only if it is done correctly. For instance, never use fiberglass or plastic fencing, as rabbits will chew right through it to get to your plants. Use metal to truly keep them out. Coated metal is best, as it won’t rust as quickly as galvanized wire will. Make sure the holes are less than one inch; anything more than that and a tiny rabbit might squeeze through. To ensure they don’t just hop over, keep the fence at least three feet tall.
Some ingenious rabbits will tunnel underneath the fence to get to the goodies, to bury the edge of the fence about 3 to 6 inches deep. Remember to put flashing at the bottom of the gate, as a rabbit can easily squeeze through that tiny space. Finally, never leave the gate open. It just takes a few seconds for a rabbit to get in there, and not much more time to hide among the plants. The rabbit will be perfectly happy to be trapped in there with all those good things to eat!
A Few More Points About Rabbit Deterrent in Garden
If you have dogs, you are in luck! Dogs love to chase rabbits, but since rabbits are so agile and quick, they are very rarely caught. However, the rabbit will definitely remember the danger posed by the dog and will likely stay away. Besides that, your dog will get some exercise in chasing the rabbits out of the garden.
You can try electric fencing. This type of fencing works very well for all kinds of wildlife, and can be set so that it doesn’t deliver too much of a jolt if you or your pets touch it accidentally. Spacing the wires three to six inches apart is typically enough to keep the rabbits away.
Finally, don’t use traps to catch the rabbits. When a rabbit gets trapped, he will do anything to get out, and that means he might wind up injured. Rabbits can also die very easily in a trap. Be kind to them, and don’t mess with traps, no matter how bad the situation might be. There are always other, more humane solutions.
watch the video to learn how to keep deer & rabbits out of the garden by making adjustments in fence and by using hair: