I Have Moles in My Garden. How Do I Stop Them?

When a gardener says, “I have moles in my garden.” I always let them know that moles do not harm garden plants.

“I have moles in my garden. How do I stop moles from eating the roots of my flowers. I have tried everything, and they still keep coming in my yard!” Question from Lisa of Agawam, Massachusetts

Answer: Moles in the garden can be confusing. Here’s why. They are carnivores that just feed on grubs, worms, and other underground invertebrates. In fact, they consume grubs that feed on the roots of perennials, so they’re actually beneficial. The problem is that other creatures, like voles and fieldmice, will find the holes and use them to access tasty roots below.

Some mole repellants do work, and there are quite a few on the market. Castor oil (Nature’s Mace Mole Repellant) seems to be the favorite. Bonide Mole and Vole Repellent Granules also get high marks. Some garden flowers are also supposed to repel moles. These include daffodils, strong-smelling alliums, easy-to-grow marigolds, and fritillarias, which have bulbs that smell like skunk.

Sonic mole repellers are another option, but from what I have read, they are only somewhat reliable but worth a try if you have a severe mole problem.

Mole tunnels and mounds are annoying to step on, but they aerate the lawn and are easily dug out, raked, and/or pushed down. Try several of these mole-repelling approaches, and see if they put a damper on your problem.

Stay safe and happy gardening,

Jessie Keith

Black Gold Horticulturist


Plants are the lens Jessie views the world through because they’re all-sustaining. (“They feed, clothe, house and heal us. They produce the air we breathe and even make us smell pretty.”) She’s a garden writer and photographer with degrees in both horticulture and plant biology from Purdue and Michigan State Universities. Her degrees were bolstered by internships at Longwood Gardens and the American Horticultural Society. She has since worked for many horticultural institutions and companies and now manages communications for Sun Gro Horticulture, the parent company of Black Gold. Her joy is sharing all things green and lovely with her two daughters.

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