How to Keep Birds out of the Garden




how to keep birds out of the garden

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Birds, with their vivid colors and gentle songs, can bring incredible beauty to any garden. However, they can also wreak havoc on your plants, damage crops, and leave unsightly droppings behind.

If you’re a beginner gardener struggling with the dilemma of keeping these feathered friends at bay without causing harm, you’ve come to the right place! In this post we’ll explore effective solutions- from physical barriers like bird netting to natural deterrents – that will help protect your thriving garden.

Key Takeaways

  • Birds can cause damage to plants and crops, leave unsightly droppings, and attract pests and insects in the garden.
  • Effective ways to keep birds out of your garden include using physical barriers like bird netting or mesh covers, implementing humane repellents like reflective surfaces or noise makers, planting bird-deterring herbs and flowers, creating designated bird-friendly areas, and using DIY solutions such as building a scarecrow or making homemade bird repellent.
  • It is important to use humane tactics when deterring birds from your garden. By incorporating natural bird repellents into your outdoor space while still providing a safe haven for birds with distraction feeders, you’ll be able to effectively protect your plants without harming any wildlife.
  • Regular maintenance practices such as cleaning up any bird droppings promptly and keeping tidy gardening spaces will go a long way in preventing future issues with these pesky pests.

Understanding The Problem: Why Birds Can Be A Nuisance In The Garden

Birds can cause damage to plants and crops, leave unsightly droppings, and attract pests and insects, making them a nuisance for gardeners.

Damage To Plants And Crops

Birds can cause extensive damage to plants and crops in a garden, wreaking havoc on the hard work of beginner gardeners. One of the most common issues is birds pecking at tender fruits like berries, tomatoes, or grapes, which not only ruins the crop but also encourages mold growth and attracts insects.

At times, small flocks of migratory birds such as starlings may descend upon a vulnerable garden causing significant destruction within just a few hours. Gardeners might find it disheartening to see fresh buds disappearing overnight due to bird attacks on their prized flowers.

In some cases, certain bird species could build nests in trees or shrubs close by that may stunt plant growth when left unchecked.

Unsightly Droppings

Bird droppings can be an unsightly and frustrating issue in the garden. They not only make your garden look messy, but they can also harbor harmful bacteria that can infect plants.

Additionally, bird droppings contain high levels of acid that can damage foliage and fruits if left unattended. To keep birds from littering your garden with their droppings, try using repellents like reflective tape or deterrents like a scarecrow or owl decoy to discourage them from landing in the area.

Planting specific flowers such as marigolds or herbs like rosemary around the perimeter of the garden could also help deter birds from entering and leaving behind their unwanted messes.

Pest And Insect Attraction

Birds can be a big problem for gardeners, not just because they destroy crops, but also because they attract pests and insects. When birds are present in the garden, they may leave droppings that attract other animals like rats and mice looking for food.

These pests will then begin to wreak havoc on your plants and vegetables causing even more damage than the birds themselves. Additionally, birds can be carriers of bugs such as aphids or spider mites which latch onto foliage and slowly suck the life out of plants over time.

Effective Ways To Keep Birds Out Of Your Garden

Use physical barriers like bird netting or mesh covers to prevent birds from landing on and damaging plants.

Use Physical Barriers Such As Bird Netting Or Mesh Covers

To protect your garden from birds, one effective method is to create a physical barrier using bird netting or mesh covers. Here are some tips for using this technique:

  • Choose the right type of netting or mesh cover that will suit your plants and garden structure.
  • Use bamboo poles, fence posts, or tall stakes to support and create a framework for the netting.
  • Make sure that the netting is securely attached and tightly fastened to prevent birds from entering.
  • Ensure that the netting or mesh covers do not touch the plants as birds can still damage them through the holes in the material.
  • Remove any dead leaves or debris on the netting as it can attract pests or insects, which may attract birds to your garden.

Using physical barriers such as bird netting or mesh covers is an excellent way to keep birds out of your garden without harming them. It will ensure that your plants are protected from damage caused by birds and give you peace of mind knowing that your efforts have paid off.

Keywords: bird netting, mesh covers, physical barriers, garden protection, plant protection, vegetable protection.

Implement Humane Repellents Like Reflective Surfaces Or Noise Makers

Using harmless bird repellent techniques is a great way to keep birds from damaging your garden. Here are some examples of humane bird repellents that beginners can implement:

  • Reflective Surfaces: Hanging reflective items like CDs or mirrors near the garden area can scare birds away by reflecting sunlight and creating flashes of light.
  • Pinwheels: Putting up pinwheels in the garden can create movement and noise that may deter birds.
  • Wind Chimes: Hang wind chimes or other noise-making devices in the garden to scare off birds with sound.
  • Predator Decoys: Placing realistic-looking owl or hawk decoys on tall stakes or perches around the garden area can keep birds away by creating a sense of danger.

Remember, it’s important to use humane tactics when deterring birds from your garden. By using reflective surfaces or noise makers, you’ll be able to effectively protect your plants without harming any wildlife.

Plant Bird-deterring Herbs And Flowers

To keep birds out of the garden, planting bird-deterring herbs and flowers can be an effective solution. Here are some options to consider:

  1. Marigolds: These bright and colorful flowers not only add beauty to the garden but also deter birds with their strong scent.
  2. Lavender: Known for its calming scent, lavender also has a unique aroma that repels birds.
  3. Rosemary: This popular herb is not only great for cooking but also serves as a natural bird repellent due to its strong smell.
  4. Dill: Birds tend to avoid dill because of its powerful aroma, making it a great addition to any garden.
  5. Chrysanthemums: These stunning flowers have a compound called pyrethrin that irritates birds’ eyes and skin, keeping them away from the garden.
  6. Basil: Not only does basil add flavor to dishes, but it also has an odor that is unappealing to many birds, making it an excellent choice for repelling them from the garden.

By incorporating these herbs and flowers into your garden, you can help keep birds at bay while still enjoying beautiful foliage and delicious homegrown produce.

Set Up Designated Bird-friendly Areas

In addition to keeping birds out of the garden, it’s also important to create designated areas in your outdoor space where they can find food and shelter. Not only does this provide a safe haven for birds, but it can also help keep them from destroying or interfering with other parts of your garden.

Installing birdhouses, nesting boxes, and birdbaths are all great ways to attract feathered friends to a specific area while keeping them away from crops and plants.

Planting flowers like sunflowers or herbs like thyme can also be helpful in drawing birds away from sensitive vegetation.

DIY Solutions To Keep Birds Away

Learn how to build a scarecrow, create homemade bird repellent, use old CDs as reflective surfaces, and make or buy a bird distraction feeder to keep birds out of your garden.

Build A Scarecrow

Building a scarecrow is an effective and inexpensive way to keep birds out of the garden. Here are some steps to follow when building a scarecrow:

  1. Choose a sturdy pole for the scarecrow’s body, such as a wooden stake or metal rod.
  2. Stuff old clothes with straw or other material and attach them to the pole.
  3. Add accessories like a hat, gloves, and boots to give your scarecrow character.
  4. Hang shiny or reflective items from the scarecrow’s arms or waist to add movement and deter birds.
  5. Place your scarecrow on the edge of the garden where it can be seen by passing birds.

By adding a scarecrow to your garden, you are not only protecting your plants but also adding a fun decoration to your outdoor space. Remember to move the scarecrow around occasionally so that birds do not become accustomed to it.

Create A Homemade Bird Repellent

Making your own bird repellent is an easy and cost-effective way to keep birds out of your garden. Here are some simple recipes to try:

  1. Chili Pepper Spray: Mix 1 tablespoon of chili powder, 1 teaspoon of dish soap, and 1 quart of water in a spray bottle. Shake well and spray on plants.
  2. Garlic Spray: Crush 10 garlic cloves and mix with 1 quart of water in a spray bottle. Let it sit for a day, strain, and then spray on plants.
  3. Vinegar Spray: Mix equal parts white vinegar and water in a spray bottle. Spray on plants every few days.
  4. Cinnamon Powder: Sprinkle cinnamon around the base of the plants or create a cinnamon solution by mixing it with water and spraying it onto the plants.
  5. Coffee Grounds: Scatter coffee grounds around the base of your plants to deter birds from coming near.

These homemade remedies are natural and safe for both your garden and the environment. Keep in mind that the effectiveness may vary depending on the type of birds you are trying to deter and the size of your garden area.

Use Old CDs As Reflective Surfaces

Reflective surfaces can be an effective way to keep birds out of the garden. Here are some ways to use old CDs as a reflective bird deterrent:

  • Hang CDs on string or fishing line around the garden area to create a visual barrier that scares birds away.
  • Place CDs in the branches of nearby trees, which will reflect sunlight and make it difficult for birds to perch.
  • Tie old CDs onto stakes and insert them into the ground near plants to protect them from birds.

Using reflective surfaces like old CDs can be an easy and inexpensive solution for keeping birds out of your garden without causing harm.

Make Or Buy A Bird Distraction Feeder

Bird distraction feeders can be a great way to keep birds away from your main garden area. Here are some tips for creating or purchasing one:

  1. Make your own DIY bird feeder by hanging a mesh bag filled with bird food in an area away from your garden.
  2. Purchase a pre – made bird feeder and hang it in a tree or on a post far enough away from the garden that birds won’t be tempted to venture closer.
  3. Consider filling the feeder with seeds that are different from what you plant in your garden, so birds will be less interested in your crops.
  4. Keep the feeder well stocked with food so that birds won’t have a reason to come closer to the garden area.
  5. If you’re concerned about attracting too many birds to the feeder, try using smaller amounts of food and filling it more frequently.

Remember, even with a bird distraction feeder, it’s important to also use other methods like netting and deterrents to fully protect your garden from unwanted visitors.

Natural Bird Repellents

Chili pepper spray and predator urine are effective natural bird repellents for keeping birds out of the garden.

Chili Pepper Spray

Chili pepper spray can be used to naturally deter birds from entering the garden. Birds are highly sensitive to capsaicin, which is a substance found in chili peppers that causes a burning sensation in their mouths and throats.

To make chili pepper spray:

  1. Mix one part chili powder with five parts water in a spray bottle.
  2. Shake thoroughly and let sit overnight.
  3. Strain the mixture through cheesecloth or a coffee filter to remove any large particles.
  4. Spray the mixture on plants and areas where birds tend to congregate.

Note: This solution can also be effective against other pests like rabbits and squirrels, but should be reapplied after rain or heavy watering.

Using natural deterrents like chili pepper spray can help keep your garden safe while being environmentally friendly at the same time.

Predator Urine

Predator urine is a natural bird repellent that can keep birds away from your garden. This is because the scent of predator urine signals to birds that there may be a predator in the area, which will encourage them to avoid it altogether. Here are some tips for using predator urine as a bird deterrent:

  • Purchase predator urine online or at your local garden supply store.
  • Apply the urine around the perimeter of your garden, focusing on areas where birds tend to congregate.
  • Reapply the urine after rainfall or every couple of weeks to ensure its effectiveness.
  • Use caution when applying and handling predator urine, as it can have a strong odor and may attract other animals to your garden.

Remember that while predator urine is an effective bird repellent, it should be used in combination with other methods like physical barriers and reflective surfaces for maximum effectiveness.

Visual Deterrents

Visual deterrents help to ward off birds from entering your garden. Here are some effective visual deterrents:

  1. Reflective tape – Hang reflective tape near your garden area as it can scare birds away with the flashing light reflections.
  2. Wind spinners – Bird-repellent wind spinners can create a visual disturbance that deters birds from the garden.
  3. Garden spinners – Install spinning objects like pinwheels, CDs, or old DVDs in your garden space to keep birds away.
  4. Scary sights – Use scary-looking decoys like snakes, owls, and balloons to frighten off birds from entering the garden.
  5. Bird netting – Drape a bird netting over your plants as it is an excellent visual barrier that works effectively against birds.

Using these types of visual deterrents will help keep your garden bird-free and protect your plants from unwanted harm and damage.


In conclusion, there are many effective ways to keep birds out of your garden without causing harm. By using physical barriers like netting or mesh covers, humane repellents such as reflective surfaces and noise makers, and planting bird-deterring herbs and flowers, you can protect your garden from damage caused by birds.

DIY solutions like scarecrows, homemade repellents, and distraction feeders can also be effective. Natural bird repellents like chili pepper spray or predator urine can also work wonders.

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