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Thread: Squirrels!!

  1. #1
    Super Member quilter1's Avatar
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    Squirrels!!

    We moved from Toronto last year to sort of rural Ontario. Being the good homemaker that I am, I planted 12 tomato plants in the garden. Maybe we will get a few tomatoes to eat and some for canning or something. Well, now they are beginning to ripen- yea! Those darn squirrels are getting to the tomatoes before me and tasting each one! Honestly- I would like to take those little things and- oh well. They eat the bird seed too! Nice fat squirrels. Any ideas on how to keep them away from my cherished tomatoes? (Besides a gun that is)
    'He cannot be a gentleman which loveth not a dog' -John Northbrooke
    Try to be as nice a person as your dog thinks you are.

  2. #2
    Super Member alleyoop1's Avatar
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    I had a similar problem. I picked my tomatoes when they were just turning yellow and let them ripen in a kitchen window. A friend of mine said to put a bowl/bird bath in the middle of the tomatoes and keep it filled with water because they are biting into the tomatoes for the water inside. Don't know if that is true or not but can't hurt to try. By the way, I gave up growing tomatoes!

  3. #3
    Super Member donnajean's Avatar
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    I use peppermint oil on cotton swabs to keep squirrels out of my flower pots. I also use Liquid Fence around things the deer like to eat & that seems to work with the squirrels as well. My neighbors supply me with tomatoes & they pick them before they are really ripe. They ripen fine on my kitchen counter.

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    Do you have a fence around your garden or just plants in pots? If you have a fence around, put some fencing on the top as well. Here we have squirrels; deer; groundhogs all competing for the veggies. I don't have a garden but BIL next door does. He has 12 ft. high fencing (sunk an additional 2-3 feet in the ground). Does not have a top on it but I don't see too much evidence of squirrel destruction with his garden. His plan seems to work on the worst of the culprits. Good luck.

  5. #5
    Super Member GEMRM's Avatar
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    If you spray the tomato plants with a mix of veggie oil and cayenne pepper, they will soon learn not to like the area. You just have to remember it's there and be careful around the plants yourself!
    We used to use this mix on corn to keep the racoons away. Also, kept the family dog away, he learned to tell by sniffing what corn was ripe, then he would pick it and eat it raw, cob and all.

  6. #6
    Power Poster nativetexan's Avatar
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    Shall l send my wild rabbits to scare away your squirrels?

  7. #7
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    One thing my mother learned about squirrels is they are rodents and reproduce to the level of their food source, they are not seasonal. She thought they were cure until they were eating all the bird food, her tomatoes and flowers about to bloom. She said she tried to talk to them about self control but it did no good. So my dad built a bird feeder they could not get to, and he put up cages around the tomatoes so they could get to them either. The flowers in pots were brought into the house. When they got into the attic he got the traps and then released them across the lake - but he was sure they got back to the house before he did - so they called in a specialist and made sure everything was boarded up better.

    Nature- ya gotta love it. But they are just so cute!

  8. #8
    Senior Member PABerard's Avatar
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    Those suckers are aggressive! We have one claw it's way into our garage. Ugh, their cuteness level has gone down around here.

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    Here, we call them tree rats! Rodent doesn't even cover it.

  10. #10
    Super Member Snooze2978's Avatar
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    Having the same problem but thought it was birds doing it as there would be just a puncture in each one. Also have a baby bunny that has found a hole in my chicken wire/picket fence too. Soon he'll be too large to get thru his secret opening though. Seems this year its taken forever for our tomatoes to ripen. Have plenty on the vine and its just been recently that they have been turning red for me. Now its canning time................finally.

    I also have been picking them as soon as they start to show color and let them finish turning inside.
    Suz in Iowa
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  11. #11
    Super Member sparkys_mom's Avatar
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    It didn't happen to me, but I read somewhere a few years ago that the tomato "culprit" was a big turtle that had acquired a taste for tomatoes. The guy came out to his garden just in time to see it take a big bite out of a tomato. I thought it was pretty funny. A turtle would be about the last thing you would expect.
    Pat

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    I sprinkle cayenne pepper all around the base of the plants. It does have to be reapplied after several rainfalls. I just buy the cheap flakes at the dollar store. I am not so kind as to relocate, if we cross paths the squirrel is "morte,"

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    I have a little gopher turtle dining on cucumbers. Thank goodness, last years groundhogs have apparently moved elsewhere.

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    My Dad pops his squirrels popcorn every morning -apparently they prefer it to his tomato's. Even if he's late getting it out they stay away from his plants and patiently wait for their breakfast. And it only costs him $3 a month And no body gets hurt

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    Super Member oldtnquiltinglady's Avatar
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    Or, you could do what we did quite by accident; get yourself a half-feral calico cat. Sophie is our "everything" deterrent; and I really do hate that because we don't have a garden this year to worry about. I love all the little cute chipmunks, squirrels, cardinals, finches, wrens, but not the moles. She doesn't discriminate, though, if they appear on her territory, they are history.
    Make every day count for something!

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    I had squirrels and trapped for 2 years and hauled them about 10 miles away and released them in open fields. Now no more squirrels, but he deer have taken over, I have fenced and tried every spray in creation and it does no good even with pepper they just act like it is salad dressing. They not only bite the tomatoes, but eat the plants down to the ground. I have almost given up planting tomatoes.

  17. #17
    Super Member Wonnie's Avatar
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    We live in the country and have squirrels, ground squirrels, racoons,deer, groundhogs, coyotes, you name it and we had the same problem but here's how we cured it. We got rid of the problem by giving up our bird feeder...sob, sob,sob....in the summer. My son built me a 4 ft. tall and 4 ft wide planter on stilts. We planted tomatoes, cucumbers, onions. All going well. Only had two bad tomatoes and they were the first ripe ones and we had a really cold spell come through and I think that was the culprit. All since have been beautiful with not a spot. We did not use any kind of fencing above it other than just wire so the tomatoes had something to climb on. Hope this helps. Next year he's building me more raised planters so we can plant more things.

  18. #18
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    Our neighbor feeds the wildlife nuts, bread, pancakes, birdseed and who knows what else several times a day. We can count 14-15 squirrels in our backyard at one time. We have squirrel trails in our backyard going from tree to tree. We do have our garden fenced in to keep the deer out, but I know the squirrels can get in. But - so far they are leaving the tomatoes alone. Perhaps they get enough to eat next door. We did finally cut down our peach trees, because the squirrels would eat them a few days before they were ripe enough to pick. One day we would have beautiful peaches, the next the tree would be bare.

    We have to watch our house carefully, because the squirrels like to eat the siding. I guess that's how they keep their teeth from getting too long, and if they can get in, they will nest in the attics.

    We don't see many squirrels when the children on the other side of us are out playing. I'm tempted to set a radio on a windowsill and blast it outside, hoping the squirrels will think someone is outside.

    Sorry to turn your post into my vent! I DO NOT like squirrels.

  19. #19
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    I have also had problems with squirrels eating my flowers. It has gotten some better since a pair of red tail hawks have moved into the neighborhood. They are slowly helping to control the squirrel population!

  20. #20
    Swap Hosts Krystyna's Avatar
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    I had this problem in my old garden and solved it by tossing out a ton of peanuts in the shell. They got distracted and left my tomatoes alone long enough for them to ripen.
    Krystyna
    Feel the fear and do it anyway!

  21. #21
    Super Member donna13350's Avatar
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    ...this stuff works great..
    http://www.enasco.com/product/C27189N

    I took a large coffee can and cut a hole in the top big enough for a squirrel,so cats and dogs couldn't get in...used duct tape to secure the top even more, then just dropped a 1" sized piece in the can. I have a large garden..they ate every single one of my broccoli, brussel sprout, and cauliflower plants...I did try all of the "nicer" fixes...but this stuff works!!! When they started on my squash and tomatoes..they had to go....
    Anyway...it takes about 4 days...so put it out in 1" chunks till there isn't any more activity, then just monitor after that.
    I tried everything before this, killing them was my last choice, but they were wiping me out.

  22. #22
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    sprinkle red pepper around and on plants

  23. #23
    Super Member lizzy's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by quilter1 View Post
    We moved from Toronto last year to sort of rural Ontario. Being the good homemaker that I am, I planted 12 tomato plants in the garden. Maybe we will get a few tomatoes to eat and some for canning or something. Well, now they are beginning to ripen- yea! Those darn squirrels are getting to the tomatoes before me and tasting each one! Honestly- I would like to take those little things and- oh well. They eat the bird seed too! Nice fat squirrels. Any ideas on how to keep them away from my cherished tomatoes? (Besides a gun that is)
    My husband's night time camera caught deer, squirrels, a racoon and one human,me, eating the few figs that my tree finally made. Any ideas for next years crop? Had the same trouble with our tomatoes except the birds and rabbits were the culprits.
    Lizzy in La.

  24. #24
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    I went right out and mixed up veg. oil and Texas Pete. Will see if this will help our squirrel problem.

  25. #25
    Super Member tlpa's Avatar
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    I have a dog...a small terrier (Jack Russell) that keeps the squirrels, rabbits & ground hogs away....

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