How to Protect Tomato Plants From Squirrels in 2023: Expert Tips

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Growing your own tomatoes is one of the joys of gardening. There’s nothing quite like biting into a juicy, ripe tomato that you’ve nurtured from a tiny seedling. But as any gardener knows, there are challenges to overcome along the way – and one of the biggest challenges can be squirrels. That’s why, I decided writing on how to protect tomato plants from squirrels.

I’ll never forget the frustration I felt last summer when I discovered that squirrels had decimated my tomato plants overnight. All the hard work I’d put in planting, watering, and weeding seemed to have been for nothing. But after doing some research and talking to other gardeners, I learned that there are effective ways to protect tomato plants from these pesky critters.

That’s why I’m excited to share this article with you today. Whether you’re a seasoned gardener or just starting out, you’ll find expert tips and tricks for keeping squirrels away from your tomato plants. From natural deterrents to physical barriers, there are plenty of options to choose from. So let’s dive in and make sure those squirrels don’t get the best of us in 2023!

How to Protect Tomato Plants From Squirrels in 2023: Expert Tips

Is it true that squirrels eat your tomatoes? They surely do, and if you’ve ever had your tomatoes stolen by squirrels, you’re probably wondering how to protect tomato plants from squirrels in your garden.

Here you will figure out the signs of squirrel activities and how to easily get rid of them in your garden.

How can you know whether there are squirrels in the garden?

How to Protect Tomato Plants From Squirrels

Squirrels may cause a lot of problems in the garden. Except for flying squirrels (which may be found in various locations across the country, including the East Coast and the Pacific Northwest), these rodents are active during the day.

Keep your eye out for the following signs that squirrels have visited your garden:

Planting beds with shallow digging areas. These aren’t great locations; you’re searching for holes the size of a golf ball or smaller.

Newly planted seedbeds attract squirrels because they like uncovering and eating the seeds.
Fruit with bite marks and/or missing. Squirrels will occasionally eat only a portion of tomato and leave the rest, while others consume the whole fruit.

Squirrels love beans, squash, cucumbers, and eggplants, among other foods.

Plants are missing. Seedling pieces may be discovered on the ground or may completely vanish. The same is true with perennial leaves.

Seedheads have been nibbled. Squirrels are attracted to sunflowers because they bite flat, maturing seedheads from the outer edges.

Container excavation. It’s most certainly a squirrel’s nut-hiding handiwork if your veggies, herbs, and flower pots are continually dug into (although chipmunks do the same thing).

Squirrels will occasionally come upon young potted plants while searching for nuts.

Flowers that have been eaten in part. Squirrels seem to favor daisies, but they do eat other flowers from time to time. So squirrels are eating in your yard if you notice half-eaten daisies with half the petals and much of the center disk missing.

Of course, catching a squirrel in the act is the best method to be sure you’re dealing with a squirrel. If you see any of these indicators while you’re at home, keep an eye on the garden.

Here Is How to Protect Tomato Plants From Squirrels

squirrels eat your tomatoes

1. The best way to keep squirrels away from your tomato plants is to create a barrier around them.

For example, you can use chicken wire made into 1-inch squares and place them around your plants.

2. Besides a fence, you can use predator decoys, often available at specialty hunting stores.

These decoys mimic a natural predator and cause the animal to run away. They can be placed in areas near your tomatoes and will scare the animals.

3. A dog is a good choice for keeping squirrels out of your garden. Many dogs have a natural instinct to chase after small animals and can be trained to avoid your tomato plants.

However, keeping them away from your plant may not be possible if your dog can’t stay near it all day.

4. Alternatively, you could try bird netting or other types of covers to protect your tomatoes from other animals.

You can also try repelling the squirrels using natural methods.

5. You can place plants that contain strong smells around your gardens, such as mint or sage.

6. You can also place a radio near your tomato patch on the soil to scare them away.

Make sure you use a sturdy fence. If you do not have access to a gardening center, you can build a cage yourself. You should ensure the cage is made of sturdy fencing so that it won’t collapse.

7. Another best way to keep squirrels away from your tomato plants is to buy bird netting or a hardware cloth cage.

8. You can also try spraying predator urine or garlic pepper.

Depending on where you live, this can help repel the squirrels. These two foods will make the squirrels afraid of the tomatoes, so the first step is to buy the repellent.

Nevertheless, you must remember that squirrels have developed a natural ability to recognize and identify predator scents. If you’re not prepared to use this method, you can always choose another method.

9. Another natural repellent that you can use to keep squirrels from your tomato plants is apple cider vinegar.

You can also try repelling the squirrels using natural methods

Unlike other methods, it will work long-term. Soak a rag in apple cider vinegar and place it around your plants. A rag will not only deter the squirrels from eating your tomatoes but will also help to prevent your tomatoes from rotting.


Protecting tomato plants from squirrels might seem like an impossible task, but with the right strategies in place, you can enjoy a bountiful harvest without sharing it with these furry thieves. Remember, prevention is key – so don’t wait until you notice damage to take action.

By incorporating some of the expert tips we’ve discussed in this article, such as using physical deterrents, natural repellents, or simply harvesting your tomatoes early, you’ll be well on your way to protecting your plants from squirrels and other critters.

So roll up your sleeves, put on those gardening gloves, and give these methods a try. Who knows, you may even discover a new favorite technique for keeping your tomatoes safe and sound. Happy gardening!”


Will squirrels eat tomato plants?

Yes. When one of your planted tomatoes has a little bite mark on it, it’s likely that a squirrel has taken a bite out of it. Bushy-tailed squirrels are cute, but they can easily ruin your vegetable garden.

Do coffee grounds keep squirrels away?

Yes. The smell of coffee grounds may sometimes deter squirrels. However, they need regular restocking and may not be suitable for every location that has to be squirrel-proofed because of their specific requirements.

What is a natural squirrel repellent?

You may keep squirrels away from your property by utilizing unpleasant smells, such as capsaicin, white vinegar, peppermint oil, coffee grinds, cinnamon, predator urine, garlic, dryer sheets, Irish Spring Soap, or rosemary. Continue reading to find out more information about the odors that may be used to deter squirrels from entering your house and yard.

Does aluminum foil deter squirrels?

Placing strips of aluminum foil in your garden mulch may help repel squirrels and other pests by mimicking the sensation of having something between their teeth that they find unpleasant. Wrapping the trunk of the tree with aluminum foil is another option if squirrels are chewing the bark off of it.

Does orange peel deter squirrels?

Yes. Over the course of the winter, be sure to set aside enough orange and lemon peels to fill a large container. When it comes time to plant in the spring, bury the old rinds just below the surface of the soil so that they are visible. This will prevent the squirrels from digging them up.

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