Monday, April 15, 2013

Squirrel Repellent

Hi all! Long time no blog.
I just have a quick recipe to share today. I really just want to go ahead and type it out so that I can have it on hand for the future. We decided to do a raised vegetable garden this year. All is well, except for the squirrels and rabbits that keep making their way into the garden and leaving little holes. I want to go ahead and end this problem before they start eating the plants or the crop... so after a bit of research, I came up with this spray. Apparently squirrels and other vermin hate the taste of strong pepper, so this should work like a charm. Only downside is that it must be reapplied after rainfall (and I'm assuming after you water the garden? Makes sense).

**UPDATE 4/19/2013- This stuff works like a charm! I haven't reapplied since I first applied it a few days ago (even after watering the garden daily) and it is still holding strong. So nice to go out and NOT have squirrel holes riddling my garden! Woohoo!**

 **WARNING** this stuff is super potent. My hands still burn from getting some of the mixture on them, and it has been a couple of hours and many handwashing sessions!

-Peppers. Okay, I will be a little more specific. I went to the Hispanic grocery store up the road and bought the hottest peppers I could find. Probably about a quarter of a pound of each, so it wasn't too pricey. I got jalapeno, hot banana, and serrano peppers. If you buy dry peppers, just throw them into the food processor and add them to the mixture that way.
-1 T ground cayenne pepper (if you can't find the actual peppers at the store)
-1 T paprika
-Water, enough to cover the peppers in a saucepan

Steps: Fill a saucepan with water. Over medium heat, begin to heat the water. Chop up (or process) the peppers and add them to the pan, seeds and all. Add in the ground cayenne pepper and paprika and stir. Simmer for about thirty minutes. Remove from heat and strain into a bowl. Allow to cool. Using a funnel (unless you really like messes and burning skin), pour into spray bottle. Apply to the area you want to protect from squirrels.

A quick note- the cayenne and paprika clogged up my water bottle. If your water bottle can't handle the mixture (or you don't want to deal with clogging), I suggest trying a couple of different things. Either will work.
1. Put the paprika and ground pepper in a coffee filter, throw it in your coffee machine, add a few cups of water to the appropriate area, and brew it like coffee. Make sure you clean your machine afterwards.
2. Run the mixture through cheesecloth before funneling it into your spray bottle.

Happy gardening!


  1. Put coffee filters in your strainer also works!

  2. Why don't you just grow jalapeno, hot banana, and serrano peppers in your garden with your other plants? Just an idea

    1. I like that idea, but when I made this spray I had a very small raised bed- no room for peppers. I now grow my veggies in pots, so this spray is also good for that.

  3. Will it get them out of your attic?

    1. I'm not sure, I've never tried it inside- but that's a good question. Let me know if you try it!