Pest Away Tips

8 Natural Scents for Repelling Groundhogs and Keeping Them Away

Groundhogs, also known as woodchucks, belong to the squirrel family. These burrowing mammals are commonly found in the eastern and central regions of North America.

Although they may seem cute and harmless, groundhogs can quickly become pests, causing damage to gardens, crops, and even livestock. In this article, we will explore some of the scents that repel groundhogs and help keep them away from our living spaces.

Predator Urine:

One of the most effective ways to repel groundhogs is by using predator urine. This scent sends a warning message to the groundhog that there is a predator nearby, making them feel afraid and likely to leave the premises.

Coyote and fox urine are two common types of predator urine that can be used as repellents. These can be purchased from a local pet or hunting supply store.

Putrescent Eggs:

Another scent that repels groundhogs is putrescent eggs, which are essentially rotten eggs. This scent works by mimicking the smell of an animal carcass, which would naturally deter groundhogs from getting too close.

One product that uses this scent is the I Must Garden Groundhog/Woodchuck Repellent. This plant-based formula is safe for use around children and pets and uses a blend of scents, including putrescent egg, to keep groundhogs away.

Garlic, Pepper, and Hot Sauce:

Groundhogs have a sensitive sense of smell, and using pungent scents like garlic, black pepper, onion, and mustard can irritate their noses and cause them to stay away. Additionally, hot sauce can be used as a repellent since the capsaicin in the hot peppers causes a burning sensation to mammals but has no effect on birds.

To use this as a repellant, mix hot sauce with water and spray it around the plants or areas you want to protect. This method can provide short-term relief and works especially well during the early growth stages of vegetable gardens.

Geranium Essential Oil:

Essential oils have gained popularity in recent years as natural solutions for various problems, including pest control. Geranium essential oil is one example of a scent that repels groundhogs.

This oil is extracted from the leaves and stems of the geranium plant and has a distinct, floral scent that groundhogs dislike. Mary Tylor Naturals Geranium Essential Oil is one product you can use to repel groundhogs.


Groundhogs are cute and fascinating animals, but they can quickly turn into a nuisance when they start to cause damage to our property. Fortunately, there are natural ways to repel these animals, including the use of scents that they find unpleasant.

Predator urine, putrescent eggs, garlic, pepper, hot sauce, and geranium essential oil are just some of the options available to homeowners looking to keep their gardens and lawns groundhog-free. It is important to note that the effectiveness of these scents may vary depending on the environment, the season, and the specific behavior of the groundhogs in your area.

However, by using a combination of repellents and other deterrents, you can increase your chances of keeping these pests away and enjoy your outdoor space without worrying about unwanted guests. Combining Deterrents:

While scents can be a helpful tool in deterring groundhogs, combining deterrent methods can increase the chance of success in keeping these pesky creatures out of your yard or garden.

Using physical and auditory deterrents in combination with scents can provide a more comprehensive approach to keeping groundhogs away. Physical Deterrents:

Fencing is one of the most effective physical deterrents against groundhogs.

The fence should be at least three feet high and extend at least one foot deep into the ground to ensure the burrowers do not dig under it. The mesh size should be no larger than two inches to prevent groundhogs from squeezing through.

Electric fences can also be an effective option, but they require some experience to install and operate. Another way to use physical deterrents is by modifying the groundhog’s environment.

By limiting access to your garden, the groundhog may not see it as a suitable place to burrow and dig. Removing piles of debris and vegetation will not only make it a less inviting place for a groundhog, but it will also reduce the places they can hide.

If a groundhog feels there is nowhere to shelter, they are less likely to stick around. Scare Tactics:

Scare tactics are another effective way to deter groundhogs.

Deer decoys with a predator scent can be placed strategically around the garden to intimidate groundhogs. Clear jars filled with water can also be placed around the garden to create an optical illusion that scares groundhogs.

When sunlight hits the jars, it produces reflections and shadows, which can confuse groundhogs and make them think humans are watching. These methods should be used in conjunction with other physical deterrents and scents to be effective.

For the best results, rotation or combination of scare tactics can help keep groundhogs from getting used to them. Switch up the timing or placement of the jars or decoys to maintain their effectiveness.

Importance of Using Multiple Deterrents:

Using a combination of physical and auditory deterrents and scents is essential for a long-term solution to keep groundhogs away from your garden or property. While scents may work well initially, they may become less effective over time as the groundhogs become accustomed to the scent.

Combining physical and auditory methods will lower the chances of the groundhog coming back. Using a variety of visual deterrents can also help, as groundhogs can become desensitized to the same object over time.

Seeking Professional Help:

If you have tried a combination of deterrents and are still experiencing groundhog problems, seeking professional help may be necessary. A nationwide pest control finder can help find a professional near you that can safely remove groundhogs or provide guidance on the best methods for control.

In conclusion, deterring groundhogs can be challenging, but by using a combination of scents, physical and auditory deterrents, and visual scare tactics, success is possible. Diligently maintaining the yard or garden by trimming plants, removing debris, and keeping feeding areas clear can also help to reduce a groundhog’s inviting environment.

Remember to go beyond just using single methods, as combining several deterrents makes it more challenging for the groundhog to adapt and return. In conclusion, groundhogs may seem like harmless animals, but they can quickly become pests that cause damage to our gardens and property.

Using scents such as predator urine, putrescent eggs, garlic, pepper, hot sauce, and geranium essential oil can be effective in deterring them. However, combining physical and auditory deterrents, such as fencing and scare tactics, can further increase their effectiveness.

It’s important to use a combination of these deterrents to prevent groundhogs from getting used to them and adapt accordingly. By utilizing these methods, you can successfully keep groundhogs away from your living space and enjoy your outdoor space without worrying about unwanted guests.

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