Squirrels are known for not being too picky when it comes to food. They will eat almost anything, but what about grass, is this a part of their diet?
Will Squirrels Eat Grass?
Squirrels will certainly forage in grass for different resources of food. However, they do not seem to eat the grass blades themselves as it is not a very nutritious source of food for them.
They are much more likely to eat your flowering plants or any seeds that come from them.
That being said, squirrels can cause a lot of damage to your grass due to their foraging habits. Planting seeds or bedding plants that they like to eat in your grass will cause them to dig up patches of grass to get to the food source.
So the grass may be disturbed, but it will likely be left uneaten.
Do Squirrels Eat Grass Seeds?
One of the squirrel’s favourite types of food is seeds, any and all seeds, but some in particular.
They are actually very fond of grass seeds and will spend their time foraging through your lawn to try and find these seeds. Especially if you have very recently planted grass.
However, if you find your new patches of grass are being eaten overnight, then you should not look to blame a squirrel.
Squirrels are diurnal, so they will feed and consequently destroy your garden in the light of day.
How to Keep Squirrels Off Grass
There are many ways from which you can deter squirrels. Chances are, they will only eat your grass if it is the newly planted seeds and sprouts.
That being said, they can damage your grass due to their other foraging methods. The deterrents listed below can be applied to all different areas of your garden to keep any disturbed places squirrel free.
Many people don’t like using chicken wire because it can look quite unattractive in your garden. But it is very effective at keeping squirrels away.
Putting chicken wire over the area, you have planted grass seeds will mean that the squirrels cannot dig them up and eat them. Once the grass has grown, squirrels should not disturb it unless other seeds are planted in the area.
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Use Repellent Plants
If you plant these in areas close to where you need to regrow your grass, they will leave it alone. If you plant enough repellent flowers, then you should be able to keep squirrels away from all of your garden.
Grinding pepper, including black pepper and cayenne pepper, over the areas of newly planted grass will keep squirrels away. They dislike spicy smells and will avoid the area if the pepper is present.
As well as this, grinding pepper in the soil adds extra nutrients to help the new grass seeds grow.
Another strong smell that squirrels dislike is that of peppermint.
There are a couple of different ways you can use this to your advantage. You can either plant peppermint close to the area or spray the area with peppermint oil. Both methods are effective though it should be noted that some squirrels have been known to get used to the smell of peppermint.
All of the above methods have been tried and tested by gardeners.
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Sadly, they cannot provide you with 100% effectiveness as sometimes a squirrel’s need for food will outweigh the negatives of these repellents. The more of these methods you use, the higher chance you will keep your garden squirrel free.
To summarise, let’s look at some main key points. Squirrels do not eat fully grown grass blades however, they will eat grass seeds and newly planted sprouts.
As they are diurnal, they will only disturb your grass in the daytime, so if eaten overnight, then there is another culprit to blame.
You can keep squirrels from disturbing your grass by using chicken wire or repelling them with smells. You can use the smells of certain flowers, like hyacinths and daffodils, or you can apply pepper or peppermint to the affected areas.
Ryan is a keen gardener from the UK who’s spent years dealing with countless, common pests over the years so knows the ins and outs of how to deal with pests in the garden