Use Irish Spring to Keep Out Garden Pests

By: Diy maven May 11, 2007

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Perennials are springing up everywhere. And the herbivores are loving it. The hostas pictured above are always the first course. Around here, the biggest culprit of garden dining are deer. Don’t believe me? I took the following picture of our back yard two years ago. Apparently, we are living in the Grand Central Station for the Bambi crowd.

Garden stores sell various deer and rabbit deterrents, but most are topical treatments that have to be applied after each rain or even heavy dew and, generally, they’re expensive. Since many are based on smells (a popular one is coyote urine), it’s not surprising a non-appetizing, odoriferous, rainproof thing such as Irish Spring keeps the critters at bay.

Just cut a bar into cubes, wrap the cubes in scraps of cloth, and staple them onto stakes.

Drive the stakes in among the tantalizing vegetation. I also cut smaller bits to scatter along the ground.

Yes, the yard smells ‘refreshing’ and no, the soap doesn’t suds up during a rain. Last year, I did the stake trick at the beginning of the year, but replenished my scattered pieces once a month or so. Together, they seemed to do the trick; the deer left my plants alone.

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does not work

Sorry, I meant put the soap shavings in a herb pot.  Would it taste soapy?

Ugh! Gotta love auto correct! That was "wash the tool you cut them with". This is also assuming you are asking about the chives...not the soap. Sorry!
You definamely could but I don't know for sure if it would affect the taste of the herbs. I highly doubt it would since it's a form of garlic. I've grown many types of vegetables right beside it without it causing any change of flavor. When they start to get too bushy, I just cut toothed back. Word to the wise: wash water you cut them back with before storing the tool and don't use a lawnmower! If not, you'll smell chives for an eternity!

Can you put it in a herb garden? And will it affect the taste of my herbs? 

Thank You. My neighbor has a dog that is outside a lot of the time and a cat that is outside most of the time.

Pat-glad you asked about the garlic onions with pets! Because it's a vegetable garden, my dog is inside, and the cats are two strays I have then in that showed up a year ago, it never crossed my mind to check the toxicity of those plants. Even though they are classified as toxic to cats and dogs (found out yesterday when you asked!) I can say with certainty that NO animal has shown any interest in them and has steered very clear of my garden! So, at least it's not one of those they like that's toxic????
Garlic and onions are toxic to dogs and cats. That said, I've got to yard cats and a dog who never even show any interest in it so it's never been an issue. If you have a pet who eats or chews on everything, I wouldn't go that route! Also, I have seen 1 or 2 small garden snakes...but that is total over about 5 or 6 years.

Is the garlic and chives safe for dogs around the garden? Also, will it work on snakes, too?

Does it work for garden snakes too??

@Anon--I'd let the pups take a sniff and see if they like the smell enough to try to chomp or lick the bar. I'm guessing they won't--Irish Spring is VERY pungent. If they turn their noses from it, literally, you should be good to go!

Is this safe to use if you have dogs that are out wondering in the yard?

Thanks. Will let my 2 neighbors know. We have deer, rabbits, guenie hens, etc here. Maybe it will even work on them. The main problem we have are the guenie hens and rabbits.

I live on the edge of the woods and have deer, turkeys, chipmunks, squirrels, etc. You name it, we have it! When I planted my garden a number of years ago, I planted garlic & chives around the perimeter. I have NEVER had the first thing touched by critters, yet they will walk right up to the edge! I find hoof marks all over but they leave the garden alone. Chives are green year round and very pretty as a border...and indestructible. I even cut them back to the ground periodically. Just make sure to cut the flowers (which are pretty and smell great) before they turn to seed????

You put the Irish Spring into a cheese cloth or porus bag. Tie it to a stake. It never touches the plants.

Does the Irish Spring affect the plant's taste?

We have tied old CD's into trees to keep the deer away. They don't like the reflection. Also scatter human hair around your plants, most animals don't like that.  Snakes are a pain. The only thing that I have found that works is to use a mouse sticky trap by your doors, yes it will kill them.

Lat I heard frogs are a part of nature that gets along with all or most creatures. My Brother-in-Law has a small pond and he has no problem with frogs or toads scaring away the bird. They live in harmony in his back yard. Know someone with a small pond and the even have fish in it with no problem.

What about frogs. I have a pond and the freak me out. Won't turn bird off , will it? The birds I want to keep in the yard

Any idea on how to get rid of guinea hens? I mean, other than shooting them. Bee Bees are useless. They bounce off. The hens Turn and look at you and hollor. They eat all my bird seed and nuts for my squirrels. I don't mind them eating the bugs---wish they would go for the ground moles----------, but they have a feist at my house if I put out seed, nuts or bread for the others.

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