Keep Squirrels Away from Fruit Trees – How To

Keep Squirrels Away from Fruit Trees – How To

Enjoying the fresh, juicy peaches and apples from your fruit tree is a pleasure that every gardener cherishes. But this pleasure can be spoiled by the unwanted guests – squirrels. These little creatures can be a real pest, causing extensive damage to your fruit trees. But how do you keep squirrels away from your fruit trees? In this article, we’ll explore a range of strategies to deter these pests, helping you to protect your trees and enjoy the fruits of your hard work. Let’s dive in!

Why do squirrels raid my fruit trees?

Squirrels are naturally attracted to food sources in their surroundings, and your fruit tree provides an ample, easily accessible food source. Let’s understand why these pests raid our gardens.

Understanding squirrels as a pest

Apart from the striking cuteness, squirrels can be a pest, especially for gardeners who often lose their fruit stock to these hungry creatures. Squirrels have a great sense of smell which enables them to locate food from afar. Once they find a fruit tree, they keep coming back until the fruit source is exhausted. The pest issue can escalate as squirrels are creatures of habit and once they notice a source of abundant food, they’ll return.

The allure of fruit trees for squirrels

Fruit trees are a big attraction for squirrels. The accessibility to food while being nestled in a tree is tempting for them. Be it apple tree or peach tree, the strong fragrance and sweet taste of the fruit lure them readily.

The damage caused by squirrels to your fruit trees

Squirrels pose a threat to fruit trees not only by eating the fruit but also causing structural harm to the tree. They gnaw on tree trunks and branches, leading to wounds on the tree which invites disease and decay.

What can I do to keep squirrels out of my fruit trees?

Several strategies can be employed to keep squirrels out of your fruit trees. Here’s how to implement them effectively.

Using squirrel deterrents and repellents

Applying squirrel deterrents, such as commercial repellents around the tree and also around the trunk can prevent the squirrels from climbing the tree. Also, capsaicin, the compound in hot peppers, can be sprayed on fruit which deters because of its pungent aroma and hot taste.

Scaring squirrels away from fruit trees

Different methods can be used to scare squirrels away from fruit trees. These include using a scarecrow or activating motion-sensor lights or sounds within your garden, which can startle and discourage these pests.

Restructuring the food source for squirrels

Providing an alternate food source like a squirrel feeder away from your fruit trees can divert them from your gardens. Preferring seeds over fruits, they can be lured away easily.

How can I protect my apple and peach trees from squirrels?

Besides being prolific breeders and voracious eaters, squirrels also excel at climbing. This makes your peach and apple trees even more susceptible to squirrel infestation.

Using fruit bags and bird netting

Fruit bags and bird netting around your fruit trees can protect your fruits from both birds and squirrels. While it may not prevent squirrels from climbing the tree, it impedes their access to the fruit, ensuring most of your yield gets to your kitchen.

Keeping squirrels away with a metal collar

Installing a metal collar or a baffle around the tree trunk can keep the squirrels from climbing your fruit trees. They find it difficult to grip and navigate around the smooth and slippery surface of the metal.

Are there natural ways to repel squirrels from my garden?

If you’d like to keep squirrels away without resorting to chemicals, there are several natural ways too.

Deter squirrels with hot pepper

Squirrels detest the strong pungency of hot peppers. You can prepare a homemade hot pepper oil spray by infusing hot pepper in oil, and spray it around your fruit trees to repel these pests.

Creating a squirrel feeder away from your trees

Setting up a squirrel feeder away from your trees can help keep the squirrels occupied, serving as a distraction from the fruit trees.

Using a scarecrow to deter squirrels and birds

Scarecrows have been used for generations to deter pests like squirrels and birds from gardens. You can fashion a scarecrow using everyday items around the house, placing it near the fruit trees as a visual deterrent to squirrels.

What if squirrels keep eating my peaches?

If you find your juicy peaches being continuously attacked by squirrels, here are a few additional steps you can take.

Protect the tree trunk from squirrels

Wrapping sheet metal around the trunk can make it harder for these scurrying pests to ascend the tree, thus protecting your peaches.

Guarding your peaches with sheet metal and capsaicin spray

Consider applying a band of sheet metal around the base of the tree to keep the squirrels from climbing up. Also, consider spraying the fruit with a natural squirrel deterrent made from capsaicin – a compound found in hot peppers. This will not only make the fruit less appealing to squirrels but also it could help deter other pests as well.

In conclusion, the key to keeping squirrels away from your fruit trees involves a comprehensive approach that includes using squirrel repellents, scare tactics, physical barriers, and alternate food sources. With these tactics, you can effectively protect your trees, ensuring their longevity and productivity.

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