Keep Pests Out of Your Garden Naturally

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Keep Pests Out of Your Garden Naturally

There is nothing worse than spending loads of time and money on your vegetable garden, only to have it decimated by natural predators.  This is our first year doing square foot gardening in our raised beds.  I’ve had to do some research into how to keep our neighborhood bunnies, foxes and friends away from my young vegetables.  We have had containers on our farmers porch the past few years and didn’t have to deal with any pests, aside from the curious toddler. Here are a few things we plan to try out in the garden, plus some that my Dad has done for years.


~Dried blood keeps the bunnies at bay.  Rabbits don’t like the smell of dried blood, or hair from it’s predators (coyotes and foxes). Get these items at your local garden store and sprinkle them around the perimeter of your garden.  Too gross?  Build a 3 foot high fence instead.


~Cup of beer to drown garden slugs.  There were always little cups of beer in our garden growing up.  Usually filled with slugs.  They are attracted to the yeast and barley in the beer.  I would use a little yogurt cup filled halfway with beer.  Replace as needed.
~Plant an onion border around your garden.  Bunnies don’t like onions!


~Marigolds are your friend.  Plant them around tomato plants to help deter pests like tomato worm, white flies and nematodes.


~Garlic Fire Spray.  Keep the bugs at bay with this homemade recipe from No-Dig Vegetable Garden. This will take care of ants, grubs, caterpillars and most small bugs.  Be nice to the ladybugs though, they are your friend. They eat aphids!
~Cats may not be nice to your garden. Discourage them by giving them a little squirt with a hose.  Don’t let them take a cat nap on your little seedlings.
~Groundhogs.  If you got them, build a fence.  A tall one.

There are loads of other natural gardening remedies online and I support giving them a shot if you end up with some pests in your garden.  Think twice about chemical pesticides that have been linked to cancer, nerve damage and birth defects.  Keep your garden and your food clean and healthy with these natural gardening tips. Good luck!

About Emily Roach

Green Boston mom of three young children. Focused on family nutrition, wholesome recipes, and an eco-friendly lifestyle.


  1. says

    Thanks for the tips. I've passed them along to my husband (the gardener of the family). He spent this past weekend building cages to keep the bunnies and squirrels out of the strawberry bushes!

  2. Anonymous says

    any tips on deterring squirrels? I'm in the process of figuring out how to build cages to put around my plants, but any other tips would be greatly appreciated!

  3. Anonymous says

    After digging up my garden, the neighbors cat thought I was preparing his toilet :( I bought the cheap bag of cayenne pepper, sprinkled it in the garden, watched the cat come over, sniff and leave!

  4. says

    Great post, Emily. I love these suggestions, and I will put a few of them to use with my new garden. I've already sprinkled my vegetables and herbs with cayenne pepper so hopefully they will have a fighting chance to survive.

  5. says

    Sounds like lots of squirrel problems, including me this morning. Fox urine pellets are another option, plus they also may not like garlic, onion and chive plants if placed around the perimeter of your garden.

    • randomrecycling says

      Hi Katie,
      Slugs were not a huge deal for me, but there are always tons in my Dad’s garden. Good luck next season. ~Emily


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