Rabbits are small and beautiful creatures. However,they can wreak havoc on your garden. But, nowadays, several rabbit repellents are manufactured commercially to help gardeners to protect their plants from rabbits and deer. Making homemade rabbit repellent is a simple, yet effective way to keep rabbits out of your garden.
Rabbit repellents basically work in two ways to keep rabbits and deer out of your flower and vegetable garden. They either produce a smell or taste, quite repulsive for the rabbits, and thereby help to protect your garden from the invasion of rabbits. However, these commercial repellents are not only expensive and require repeated applications, some of them may contain chemicals that can pose some health hazards to your pets. However, homemade repellents are not only inexpensive, but a safe alternative to the commercial repellents.
How to Make Homemade Rabbit Repellent
Homemade repellants are either odor based or taste based. They can be easily made with some readily available household substances like pepper, garlic, eggs, milk, chili, etc.
Garlic Powder and Hot Chili Mixture
One such repellent can be made by mixing garlic powder with hot pepper or chili. After mixing these ingredients properly, add some water and leave the mixture for two to three days. Then strain it and add a few drops of liquid dish-washing soap. Now, you can spray this solution on the plants of your vegetable and flower gardens with a spray bottle.
Cayenne Pepper and Tabasco Sauce
Another homemade repellent can be prepared by mixing cayenne peppers with tabasco sauce, dishwashing soap and water. You can also add Elmer’s glue to this and then spray this mixture on the leaves of the plants.
Egg and Garlic Mixture
Rabbits have a keen sense of smell, and they particularly dislike the smell of egg and garlic. So, you can make a mixture of egg, milk, garlic, tabasco sauce and liquid dishwashing soap to protect your garden from the rabbits.
Sprinkle Chili Powder
Sometimes, sprinkling some chili powder on the base of the plants can be equally beneficial in protecting your garden plants from the invasion of rabbits.
Place Bone Meal
Placing blood meal or bone meal around the plants has also shown some efficacy in controlling the menace of rabbits.
Linseed Oil and Detergent Mixture
Many people have benefited from the use of a rabbit repellent that can be made by combining raw linseed oil, detergent and water. The proportion of linseed oil in this solution should be larger than that of water and detergent.
A very simple way to keep rabbits away from your garden is to place some corn cobs soaked in vinegar. Egg and vinegar also work well if placed on the border of the garden.
Mint, Garlic, and Egg Mixture
As rabbits do not like the taste of garlic and mint, both can be combined with eggs to make an effective rabbit repellent.
Rabbit Repellent Products
Apart from the homemade repellents, some organic gardeners have successfully used liquid fence rabbit repellent products, which are claimed as natural, biodegradable, rain-resistant and pet friendly animal repellents.
Planting Herbs and Plants
Many gardeners have also benefited from planting certain plants in their garden. They can be termed as natural pest repellent. Such herbs or plants include foxgloves or digitalis, aconitum, catnip plants, etc. Even aromatic plants like lavender can act as a rabbit repellent, though we find its smell quite pleasing to our senses.
As far the efficacy of these rabbit repellents is concerned, it depends on various factors like frequency of application and availability of food. Heavy rain can affect their efficacy by reducing the intensity of both taste and odor. Therefore, it is important to reapply these repellents after a heavy shower. Wear gloves whenever you apply the repellent as it contains chili and pepper. The effectiveness of homemade repellents also depends on the population of rabbits and availability of food. In case of severe food shortage, rabbits may eventually learn to tolerate the smell and taste of these repellents. In such a situation, you may need the help of other methods like placing simple chicken wire fence or electric fence and rabbit traps, depending on the severity of the problem.