Why Are Squirrels Digging In My Potted Plants? (Explained)

Why Are Squirrels Digging In My Potted Plants

Are you tired of finding holes and mounds of dirt in your potted plants? You may have a squirrel to blame.

Squirrels dig in potted plants for food, nesting, and as a natural behavior. Potted plants can provide an easy source of entertainment and a place to search for food. They may also dig for nesting material and to bury or store food. Deter them with humane tactics like loud noises or sprinklers.

Are you sick and tired of your plants looking like they’ve been through a mole apocalypse? Discover the secrets to keeping your potted plants safe from the destructive digging habits of squirrels.

Why do squirrels dig in potted plants?

As active and inquisitive creatures, squirrels are predisposed to digging. Burying and storing food and constructing nests require digging, which they do in the wild. Squirrels in urban or suburban regions may nevertheless display this digging habit, despite having fewer suitable environments in which to do so. Squirrels may enjoy exploring potted plants in search of food and as a source of fun.

How do squirrels choose which potted plants to dig in? 

Plants that bear seeds, nuts, or berries tend to attract squirrels. They may also be tempted to newly watered plants since the soil is more inviting to them. It’s also possible that squirrels will dig in potted plants if placed on the ground or at a lower height.

What damage do squirrels cause to potted plants? 

Squirrels have been known to inflict many problems on potted plants by digging in them. The plants might wilt and die if the roots are dug out and eaten. They may also create mounds and holes that cause the plants to topple over easily. Furthermore, squirrels may further harm the plants by nibbling on their stems and leaves.

How can I prevent squirrels from digging into my potted plants?

Avoid having squirrels dig up your potted plants by implementing one of several methods. Metal or plastic containers, which squirrels cannot chew through, are one possibility. As an alternative, you can cover the dirt around your plants with pebbles or other items that squirrels will have trouble digging through, or you can use bird netting. You might also spray the plants with a repellent, but keep in mind that this could have unintended consequences, such as driving away beneficial insects and other wildlife.

What should I do if I find a squirrel digging in my potted plants? 

Squirrels might be discouraged from digging up your potted plants if you catch them in the act. You might try clapping your hands or making other loud noises to scare the squirrel away. Or, you may use a sprinkler with motion detection or a hose to spray the squirrel and perhaps drive it away. More extreme steps, such as catching and removing the squirrels or contacting a professional pest control firm, may be necessary if these tactics fail or if you have a very hard time discouraging the squirrels.

Can I discourage squirrels from digging in my potted plants without harming them?

Never forget that squirrels are wild creatures; if you don’t want them digging into your potted plants, it’s better to discourage them with a non-lethal method. It’s possible to use humane deterrents to get rid of squirrels, including setting up sprinklers that turn on when they detect motion or making loud noises to scare the squirrels away. Squirrels can be deterred without harming the animals by utilizing natural repellents like hot pepper spray or citrus oils.

In conclusion

A squirrel may dig in your potted plants for many different reasons, including the pursuit of food and the innate need to explore their environment. Plants that have just been watered, especially those that yield seeds or nuts, may entice them. Squirrels may be detrimental to houseplants by destroying them in their pots by gnawing on the plants’ stems and leaves and by digging up the plants’ roots. Use squirrel-proof containers, cover the soil with pebbles or other objects, or spray it with a repellent to keep squirrels from digging up your plants in pots. Making a lot of noise or utilizing a hose or motion-activated sprayer will deter a squirrel from digging into your potted plants. Humane squirrel deterrence measures, such as the use of natural repellents or startling tactics, are essential.


I'm an animal lover who managed to learn multiple ways to help animals throughout the years. Through this site, I will be sharing my experiences, knowledge, and everything I've learned.

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