Do Raccoons Destroy Vegetable Gardens?[Tips to Keep Away Raccoons]

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A question may arise in your mind do raccoons destroy vegetable gardens? if you see your beautiful garden is ruined in the mid of night. Then you may suspect they can be raccoons.

Raccoons are completely capable of destroying vegetable gardens in no time. These animals are very skilled at finding food sources. They will eat all the vegetables and fruits and dig your garden to find earthworms and grubs, and sometimes they will tear up the sod.

If they find a food source they like, they will continue to come back to it. This also applies to vegetable gardens. It can be very difficult to keep these animals out of a vegetable garden. This article will discuss raccoons and their damage to vegetable gardens and ways to prevent them.

Read Full Article: How To Get Rid of Raccoons

What Is Digging Up My Garden at Night?

Imagine something digs up your plants at night, and you never see a thing. You can’t help imagining that what is digging up my garden at night?

Possum, raccoon, and skunk are some nighttime visitors that cause all their damage in the night. But Raccoons are also one of the most common nocturnal culprits destroying your garden in search of food.

Do Raccoons Eat Garden Vegetables?

Raccoons are omnivorous creatures and can eat anything from plants, fruits, crayfish, earthworms, and even all the beautiful green vegetables you’ve grown in your garden.

They are nocturnal and lazy pest who looks for food at night in the easiest way possible, and what’s more accessible than raiding a vegetable garden when everyone is peacefully sleeping.

What Are Some Signs of Raccoon Damage In Your Garden?

Here are some signs that can help you identify if it’s actually a raccoon eating your vegetable garden.

  • Half-eaten vegetables
  • trash is strewn all across your vegetable garden
  • Holes in the soil
  • Empty bird feeders
  • Raccoon poop

Now you know if it’s actually a raccoon in your garden. Now you can make a plan to deter them from destroying your vegetable garden.

Why Are They Attracted to Your Garden?

Raccoons are nocturnal creatures, and they are attracted to anything that promises food or shelter. Over time, gardeners have learned that raccoons will do just about anything to get into their gardens and eat their fruits and vegetables.

Raccoons are known for their skill and intelligence, and If you have ever had your garden raided by raccoons, you know how difficult it can be to prevent them from eating your fruits and vegetables.

Do Raccoons Like Tomatoes?

Raccoons do not have any preferences when it comes to food. If you have found discarded tomatoes in your yard, then it is possibly a hungry raccoon trying to steal juicy red tomatoes from your garden.

Even though raccoons can eat tomatoes, it is not the food they would like to eat often. Because tomatoes and acidic and cause them acidity and upset stomach. That’s why they will try to avoid eating tomatoes.

How To Prevent Raccoons from coming to Your Garden?

It can sometimes be difficult to keep these animals out of a vegetable garden. If raccoons love the vegetables you have planted, it can sometimes be impossible to keep them out.

While there’s no way to deter these pests completely, there are ways to prevent them from eating your garden vegetables.

· Make Sure Not to Leave Garbage Cans Outside

Raccoons love freshly disposed of veggies and meat, and they love the smell that comes from trash cans. The trash cans you leave outside can provide a desirable meal for raccoons. They will find rich sources of high-calorie food from your trash.

Make sure to put your trash cans inside at night or put it under bright light.

· Don’t Feed Them

People often feed raccoons due to them being cute. Once you stop giving them food, they will find their way into your house to get the food for themselves, which can cause you some severe property damage.

The constant food supply will encourage them more to hang around the property. So, avoid feeding them in the first place to prevent any damage later.

· Stop Food and Water Supply

Don’t leave your pet’s water or food bowl and bird feeders outside at night; it will encourage them to visit your garden regularly.

· Trim Your Trees Frequently

Raccoons are great climbers and can easily climb trees. If you have trees near your house or garden, they will quickly climb them to your vegetable garden.

Trimming trees will keep raccoons from climbing into your house or garden, as well as keep your trees healthy.

· Get Rid of Grubs and Earthworms

Even though grubs and earthworms rarely cause any real damage to the garden, other than making holes in the soil. But still, they are one of the main reasons that raccoons come to visit your garden.

Raccoons will keep digging your garden, searching for insects to eat until it is completely ruined. If you want to stop raccoons from destroying your vegetable garden, kill grubs and other garden soil first.

How To Get Rid of them from Your vegetable Garden?

Raccoons are considered pests due to all the damage they cause humans. They are also known to be very intelligent, and it is not very easy to get rid of them once they find a way into your house to devour all the yummy and healthy vegetables.

Here are a few tips and tricks that will help you to get rid of them and save your garden;

· Deter Them with Fence

The best way to discourage raccoons from coming into your garden is to make it as unwelcoming as possible. A fence around your garden will help keep raccoons away, but it is not foolproof.

Raccoons are quite intelligent, and they will quickly jump a fence or dig under a fence to get to your garden. But if your garden is completely fenced with a wire mesh, the raccoons will likely move on to a less protected area.

· Use Raccoons Repellents

Using repellents like peppermint oil, Epsom salt, and essential oil is by far the cheapest option. This is because all you have to do is spray the repellent around the area where the raccoons are coming into your garden, and they will go away.

Another easy way to discourage them from your garden can be some homemade repellents like sprinkling blood meal or baby powder to your vegetables. It will repel raccoons and keep them off.

DON’T forget to wash the vegetables before cooking and eating carefully.

· Use Bright Lights in Your Garden

As nocturnal animals, raccoons are scared of bright lights. However, they are used to being around constant lights; maybe it is not enough to scare them away. Use motion-activated lights. Its light movement will definitely scare them away.

· Use Traps

Trapping raccoons is an effective and most humane way of raccoon removal. Because of that, it’s also the method most preferred by wildlife control professionals.

Put traps near your vegetables and use marshmallows and berries as bait to attract them in the trap.

Are Raccoons Bad for Vegetable Gardens?

Raccoons are known to be predators of pests. They will dig your garden looking for earthworms and grubs until these little critters completely destroy your beautiful vegetable garden.

What Vegetables Do Raccoons Hate?

Raccoons are not fond of spicy food, so you plant Habanero chilies in your garden along with other vegetables. Raccoons also don’t like tomatoes as it causes them an upset stomach and prickly leaves and stems vegetables like pumpkin, cucumber, and squash.

· Plant Vegetables with A Foul Smell

Raccoons have a sensitive smell. You can plant garlic, onion, lavender, etc. in your garden along with other vegetables. They will avoid gardens with these smells.

What Plants Attract Raccoons in Your Garden?

Raccoons are known as marauders of sweet corn patches, but they also love to eat melon, berries, and many other garden vegetables.

Sweet corns are high in calories and raccoon’s favorite. So, if you want to plant sweet corn in your garden, then make a protective barrier of the plants that they hate around it.

Conclusion

Raccoons are very cute and cuddly. However, if you are into gardening, then raccoons can be your worst nightmare. These troublesome pests can ruin the efforts you put into your garden. They dig up gardens in search of grubs and worms and eat your vegetables.

They don’t care if they make a mess of your lawn in the process. If they find food somewhere, they will keep coming back for more until it is gone. If you are having trouble keeping raccoons out of your vegetable garden, you may need to take extra precautions to protect your vegetables.

List of sources

 Raccoon and Opossum Damage – University of Nebraska

A preliminary experiment on covering sweet corn with netting to exclude raccoon S Stern, RE Nimocks, R Jaye, R DiGregorio.

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