The Impact of Squirrels on Your Garden and How to Protect It

The Impact of Squirrels on Your Garden and How to Protect It

At Pestong, we figure out the worth of your garden for growing beautiful flowers and fresh vegetables, and we recognize the troubles caused by squirrels, including dug-up plants and eaten fruits. Specializing in good-natured and effective squirrel management, we are adept at identifying how these fluffy visitors access your garden and utilize methods to discourage them, including setting up barriers, using natural repellents, and strategic garden rearrangement. For more challenging situations, we utilize humane traps for safe relocation. If squirrels disrupt your garden near Toronto, Pestong can help protect your green space, allowing you to enjoy it without worry.

Section 1: Understanding Squirrels

Understanding Squirrels

When you look out your window, you might see squirrels running around, jumping from tree to tree, and sometimes making their way into your garden. But did you know different types of little animals have unique habits? Let’s dive into the world of squirrels, understand their dining preferences, where they like to call home, and how their seasonal stunts could impact your garden.

Different Types of Squirrels in Residential Areas

In our neighbourhoods, we mainly encounter three types of squirrels:

  1. Tree Squirrels: These are the ones you often see rush up and down trees. They are known for their long, bushy tails and active movements.
  2. Ground Squirrels: As the name suggests, ground squirrels live on the ground and can create extensive burrow systems. They are often mistaken for chipmunks because of their similar size and stripes.
  3. Flying Squirrels: No, they do not fly, but they can glide from tree to tree thanks to a flap of skin between their legs. These squirrels are active at night and less commonly seen by homeowners.

What Squirrels Love to Eat and Where They Live

What Squirrels Love to Eat and Where They Live

Squirrels are not picky eaters. Their diet mainly includes:

  • Nuts and seeds: These are their favourites, and they are known to store them away for later.
  • Fruits and vegetables: Unfortunately, this includes many of the same ones we like to grow in our gardens.
  • Flowers and plant bulbs: Some squirrels dig up gardens to bury their food to snack on these tasty treats.

Squirrels make their homes in places that feel safe from hunters. Tree squirrels, for example, build nests in tree branches. Ground squirrels live in burrow tunnels underground, which can disrupt your garden layout and stability.

Seasonal Behavior and Its Impact on Gardening

Squirrels behaviour changes with the seasons, affecting how and when they interact with your garden:

  • Spring: This is the nesting season. Squirrels are busy building nests and looking for food to feed their young, which might lead them to your garden.
  • Summer: As the weather warms up, squirrels continue to search for food, which can lead to more garden visits.
  • Fall: Preparation for winter begins. You will see squirrels more frequently as they collect food to store for the colder months. It is when they attack gardens for nuts, seeds, and other goods.
  • Winter: While less active, squirrels still venture out on warmer days to refill their food supply and sometimes dig into their buried treasure in or around your garden.

Understanding these patterns can help you find and reduce the impact squirrels may have on your gardening efforts. By knowing what attracts them and when they are most active, you can better protect your garden from these visitors.

Section 2: The Negative Impacts of Squirrels on Your Garden

The Negative Impacts of Squirrels on Your Garden

Physical Damage

Squirrels can cause a variety of physical damages to your garden, which include:

  • Digging Up Bulbs: They often dig up and eat bulbs, making them for food storage.
  • Eating Fruits, Vegetables, and Flower Buds: Squirrels have a taste for many of the same fruits, vegetables, and flowers that gardeners grow.
  • Chewing on Bark and Branches: They damage the trees and create health issues for the plants.

Diseases and Parasites

Squirrels can be carriers of various diseases and parasites, which can indirectly affect garden health and even risk to pets. These include:

  • Fleas and Ticks: These parasites can transferred from squirrels to pets.
  • Plant Diseases: While squirrels are not direct carriers of plant diseases, their activity can stress plants, making them more open to diseases.

Disruption of Plant Growth

The activities of squirrels can significantly disrupt the healthy growth of plants in several ways:

  • Root Disturbance: Their digging can disturb plant roots, affecting their ability to absorb water and nutrients.
  • Direct Damage: Eating shoots and leaves can stunt plant growth and reduce yields.

Section 3: Signs of Squirrel Activity in Your Garden

Noticing squirrels in your garden can be charming until you see the signs of their damage. Here is how you can tell if squirrels are turning your garden into their playground.

Visual Indicators

  • Holes: Small holes around your garden are a sign. Squirrels dig these to store their food.
  • Damaged Plants: Bitten fruits, chewed leaves, or cracked branches can indicate squirrel feed.
  • Uprooted Bulbs: Finding bulbs pulled out of the soil or bite marks on them? Squirrels are likely the offenders.

Squirrel Droppings

  • Squirrel droppings are similar in size and shape to a coffee bean but can vary depending on their diet. Seeing these around your garden usually means squirrels are frequent visitors.
  • Droppings can also be a health concern, so you have to clean the area properly.

Noises and Sightings

  • Chattering and Scratching Sound: Hearing sounds, especially from trees or rooftops, can signal squirrel movement.
  • Frequent Sightings: Seeing squirrels often, especially during peak activity times in the morning and late afternoon, indicates they are comfortable in your garden.

Section 4: How to Protect Your Garden from Squirrels

How to Protect Your Garden from Squirrels

Keeping squirrels under control does not need to be a fight. Here are some practical kind ways to protect your garden.

Physical Barriers

  • Netting: Covering fruit trees, bushes, and vegetable beds with netting can prevent squirrels from reaching your plants.
  • Fences: A tall, smooth fence can prevent squirrels, though it might need an outward-facing top edge to stop them from climbing over.

Natural Repellents

  • Spicy Mixtures: Spraying a blend of water and red pepper around your garden can stop squirrels, as they dislike this smell.
  • Plant Choices: Some plants, like daffodils and marigolds, are less attractive to squirrels. Planting them around your garden can act as a natural barrier.

Safe and Humane Traps

  • If you choose to use traps, ensure they are humane, catching squirrels without hurting them. Check local wildlife laws before moving, as some areas have clear rules about trapping and relocating wildlife.

Garden Design Tips

  • Less Appealing Plants: Incorporate plants that squirrels find less attractive to prevent them from visiting.
  • Proper Waste Management: Ensure compost and waste are securely covered.
  • Cleanliness: Regularly remove fallen fruits or nuts, which can attract squirrels to your garden.

Combining these techniques can create a less attractive environment for squirrels, helping to protect the garden.

Section 5: When to Call the Professionals

Even with the best efforts, sometimes DIY methods do not manage squirrels in your garden. Knowing when to call in Pestong professional help can save you time, frustration, and potentially even your garden.

Recognizing Strategies When DIY Methods Are Not Enough

  • Repeated Failures: If you have tried multiple methods and squirrels are still damaging your garden, it might be time for our Toronto pest control services.
  • Significant Damage: When squirrels cause considerable harm to your garden, trees, or property, our squirrel removal Toronto service can be effective.
  • Safety Concerns: If you are concerned about disease information or safety for pets and children, our professional squirrel pest control service can provide peace of mind with safe, humane approaches.

The Benefits of Professional Pest Control Services

  • Expertise and Experience: Our professionals have the knowledge and tools to effectively and humanely manage squirrel control and their populations.
  • Customized Solutions: Our Pest control experts can offer tailored strategies specific to your garden needs and squirrel nest in your home.
  • Time and Cost Efficiency: Our professionals can quickly execute solutions, potentially saving you from additional damage and expenses.

Pestong Services and Approach to Humane Wildlife Control

Pestong specializes in humane wildlife control, guaranteeing that the methods used to manage squirrel populations are safe and ethical. Our services include:

  • Detailed Assessments: We assess your property to identify the size of the squirrel problem and entry points.
  • Humane Trapping and Relocation: When necessary, we use humane traps that safely capture and relocate squirrels.
  • Prevention and Exclusion: Beyond managing the direct problem, we focus on long-term solutions that prevent squirrels from returning, including sealing entry points and advising on garden improvements.


Squirrels can be lovely visitors but problematic tenants in your garden. Understanding their habits, the signs of their presence, and how to prevent them effectively is essential in maintaining the health and beauty of your outdoor space. Pestong Pest Control is committed to providing humane and best solutions to your squirrel problems. We understand the value of your garden and are here to help you protect it. Whether you’re facing an ongoing fight with squirrels or seeking preventative measures, we invite you to contact us. Our team of experts is ready to offer advice, services, and the peace of mind that your garden is in good hands.

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