By Barbara Fahs, Garden Guides Contributor
Although beneficial varieties of snakes can help control other garden pests, you certainly don't want any poisonous snakes on your property.
Prevention and Control
Using bird netting in your garden can be effective in tangling up snakes--they just can't get out, and then you can carefully dispose of them. If you have rattlesnakes, it's smart to wear protective shoes and long pants.
Venomous snakes are a hazard to humans, pets and livestock but not to the plants that provide them with food and shelter.
Poisonous snakes can present a true hazard to small animals and sometimes kill even larger livestock when they bite them on the head.
Hawks, owls and eagles will eat rattlesnakes as will the king snake. But don't expect these predators to solve your snake problem 100 percent.
Keep your garden free of mice, rats, frogs, ponds and other standing water. An electronic snake repellant emits a pulsing vibration that snakes do not like. Glue boards can be helpful, but you'll have to deal with the angry snake after it's stuck. If you keep vegetation closely mowed, you'll naturally remove habitats for snakes.
Other Methods of Control
You won't want snakes in or around your house, so seal up openings with mortar, hardware cloth or steel wool to deny them access. Be on the lookout for any areas that offer a cool, damp, dark place for them to live, and alter those environments.