It’s hard not to “make a mountain out of a molehill” when your luscious lawn suddenly gets pockmarked with holes caused by a visiting critter. A mole may not be there to steal your produce or enter your home, but the damage it does while burrowing about its business will definitely rob you of the pleasures you get from enjoying your springtime lawn and garden.
In addition to ruining the aesthetic of your yard, you also have to worry about plants and vegetables dying from having their roots exposed. And a mole’s often intricate network of tunnels may be utilized by mice, voles or other rodents that will eat your plants’ roots and bulbs. Be ready to tackle this unexpected problem and restore your backyard haven to its former beauty!
Is That a Molehill?
There are many burrowing animals, but the entrance leading to and from a mole’s tunnel is rather distinct, often described as having a volcano shape. This is built up by the burrowing mole, and the displaced soil trickles down the sides of the pile, creating the conical shape. These may even be connected by a raised series of trails visible on the surface.
What Is a Mole Doing Here?
If moles aren’t interested in your vegetables, why are they there? What do moles eat? Often believed to eat plant roots, moles are in fact not herbivores, but disturb the plants in search of grubs, earthworms and other animals living off the soil – or living off your plants! Their resulting actions can endanger your plant life by forcing roots out of the soil, separating them from the nutrients they need to survive. Pat down any upturned soil or plant and add water to prevent any foliage in the vicinity of the disturbance from drying out.
The mole will likely not remain in your yard longer than it takes to clear away all the insects and invertebrates it can find, but in that time it can make a shambles of your carefully trimmed yard. Take comfort in the fact that moles are almost always solitary, except during breeding season, so you probably have only one to deal with.
How to Remove a Mole
There are a number of methods for driving out moles. Poisons and traps can eliminate your troubles for good, but if you do not want to kill the critter, products that repel moles are available that can work just as well.
- Granular repellents – Quickly repels moles and gophers; easily penetrates soil allowing repellent to reach tunnels quickly. Sprinkle daily in ever-expanding circles, watering in for about twenty minutes at each application.
- Liquid repellents – 100% castor oil! Mixed and spread with the help of a hose, these usually require only one application.
- Sonic repellents – Driven into the soil, these spikes emit irritating sonic pulses underground.
Had Success Removing Moles?
If you’ve had success dealing with critters that endangered the beauty and integrity of your lawn or garden, let us know on our Facebook page. It would be great if you could include before and after photos!