What Smells do Squirrels Hate? (Deterrent Smells)

Squirrels can be pests in your garden by digging up plants, chewing through bark, and destroying the fruits you’ve worked so hard to grow! Luckily some things smell bad to squirrels and can help to repel them. You can add many plants to your garden to help repel squirrels. Here’s a list of smells that squirrels hate.


Plant Smells Squirrels hate

Smells that Deter Squirrels

Squirrels hate strong smells and will stay away from areas that smell strange. Smells are a good way to get rid of squirrels.  They have really sensitive noses, and the scent of many plants is enough to make them avoid that area of your garden. A great way to deter squirrels is to plant strong-smelling herbs, flowers, or vegetables in your yard. You can also use essential oils, apple cider vinegar, or hot chili sauce to deter squirrels.

Rosemary (Rosmarinus officinalis)

Squirrels Hate Rosemary
Rosemary

This is an excellent option if you’re looking for a smell that will not permeate everything else you have growing in your garden. Just plant some rosemary near where squirrels are chewing on plants or trees, and they should stay away!

Mint (Mentha spp)

Squirrels Hate Mint
Peppermint Plant

Another very strong-smelling herb that repels squirrels is mint. Plant some peppermint around your garden, especially near vegetable patches or flower borders. It also helps if you have an indoor mint plant growing in food preparation areas.

Alternatively, use peppermint essential oil and add a few drops to some water. Put the mixture in a spray bottle and spray it along the border of your vegetable garden to keep squirrels away. You can also add apple cider vinegar to the spray to make it more effective.  Peppermint is also a smell that deters chipmunks.

Garlic (Allium sativum)

Planting some garlic around your garden will not only keep squirrels away but rabbits, deer, and other animals too. It is a strong-smelling plant that they don’t like to be around!  If you’re thinking about using this plant, here’s the best time to plant garlic.

Cinnamon (Cinnamomum zeylanicum)

If you have squirrels that like to chew wood, try sprinkling some cinnamon around your home. Squirrels hate the smell and will eventually get sick of chewing there and leave!

Pepper (Capsicum annuum)

Pepper and capsicum have been tested and found to be an effective deterrent for squirrels – plant some hot peppers near your plants or fruit trees, and squirrels will stay away and stop eating your fruit. You can also make a spray by boiling up the pepper in water, straining it out, and then spraying the solution near the plants to keep them away.

An easier way to make a spray is to use hot pepper sauce and mix it with water. The sauce can be sprayed around your yard. It has a powerful smell and taste and will help to deter squirrels.

Animal urine

Smells Squirrels Don't Like

Squirrels are more likely to stay away from your yard if you have a pet, as they don’t like the smell of animal urine. A dog or cat can also scare squirrels by chasing them away.

There is also a plant called a crown imperial that smells like skunk urine. If you don’t have any pets, adding this plant to your flower borders is beneficial.

Coffee grounds

Sprinkle some used coffee grounds around your yard. Squirrels hate the smell, and coffee can also be beneficial to your plants.


Products that deter squirrels

You may like to check out some of these commercial products available from Amazon that have been proven to help deter squirrels.

Irish Spring Soap

Irish spring soap is very strong smelling and is often used by gardeners to help keep squirrels and other vermin out of their yard. This soap comes in a bar form, but you can mix some foam with water and then spray it around your yard.

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Bounce dryer sheets

Dryer sheets have a unique smell that squirrels hate. They can be tied to your fence to help keep squirrels away. You can use either bounce dryer sheets, which work surprisingly well, or search for peppermint or lavender dryer sheet, as squirrels hate these smells.

You may also like to add a few drops of essential oil to the sheet to make it smell more. Peppermint, lavender, or tea tree oil works well.

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Conclusion

The above list of plants are easy to grow in your yard or container garden that have smells squirrels hate. You can place them anywhere you have an issue with unwelcome vegetable-chewing critters. Squirrels don’t like strong smells as they have sensitive noses and will stay away from areas that smell odd. Alternatively, make a spray using essential oils or hot chili sauce.

Last update on 2022-08-09 / Affiliate links / Images from Amazon Product Advertising API