Can Laundry Sheets Really Deter Squirrels From Your Garden? Here's What You Need To Know

Squirrels may be fun to watch, but they're a major nuisance for birdwatchers and gardeners alike. After dumping out all the seed in your bird feeders, squirrels can also damage gardens and pluck produce before it's ripe — or worse, take a single, toothy bite out of every fruit on the branch. Deterring squirrels from your property long-term can be challenging, but for most people, killing them feels too inhumane. Luckily, there's no need to invest in a fancy ultra-sonic deterrent system or silly Squirrel Boss Bird Feeder; the answer may already be sitting in your laundry room. A popular DIY solution suggests that strategically placed dryer sheets will repel squirrels from your yard with their strong fragrance — and most sources find this to be true!

According to Precision Pest & Wildlife Removal, squirrels dislike strong scents, including natural and synthetic fragrances. Because dryer sheets have a high amount of strong fragrance, they could be effective for keeping squirrels away from your yard. Here's how to place dryer sheets around your home to deter squirrels and other ways to amplify the repelling effects.  

A squirrel's nose knows best

Squirrels are repulsed by almost any super-strong smell, including peppermint, vinegar, coffee, and spices. While dryer sheets don't smell like any of these things, they still give off a powerful, fresh aroma that is overwhelming to little rodent nostrils, making them want to avoid the area. Squirrels may also avoid strong scents because they cloud their senses and make it harder to pick up on potential mates, food sources, or nearby predators. Dryer sheets have had mixed results for deterring rodents like mice and rats, but many experts still claim that they may be worth trying if you're waging war on squirrels. They may be more effective when combined with a few other DIY solutions or plants you can add to your garden to repel squirrels

To repel squirrels with dryer sheets, try hanging sheets in the attic, on a clothesline, near a bird feeder, around your garden, or anywhere else where squirrels tend to forage or nest. To stake them in your garden, tie a dryer sheet to a bamboo stick and place it in the soil about 1 foot above the ground to let the scent emanate over your vegetables. Animal repellent experts recommend using about 20 dryer sheets and spacing them closely enough to create a strong-smelling perimeter around your yard or garden. Remember to change the sheets every few weeks to keep the scent fresh.