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How to Get Rid of Rats in the Garden

By Melissa Lewis ; Updated September 21, 2017

Rats often nest in gardens and yards, especially if there is plenty to eat like fruits, vegetables and composted meats. It is essential that you get rid of the rats before they take haven in your home; however, in the meantime, make sure you have covered any holes or possible entrance ways into your home. You can take several courses of action to get rid of the rats yourself before you call in the professionals.

Clean up your garden. Pick up any dropped fruits or rotting vegetables everyday.

Don’t use compost with fish, meat, chicken or anything that rats eat. They basically eat what we eat, so you may want to only compost leaves and other yard debris.

Place sheet metal around isolated trees. It should be a couple feet tall so that rats cannot jump over it. This will help if the rats are eating fruit or nuts right off your trees.

Use a commercial rodent repellent. Several on the market are suitable for your garden and are organic and safe to use around children and pets. Rat repellents are usually shaken around your yard or garden. They use scent, like fox, to deter rats from coming into the area. People can not smell the scent, but the rat’s sensitive olfactory glands can.


Things You Will Need

  • Sheet metal
  • Rat repellent


  • If you still can't get rid of your rats, if applicable, consider taking up your vegetable garden and pruning back your fruit bushes and vines for the remainder of the year.


  • Traps can catch unsuspecting animals, such as stray animals and pets.
  • Poisons can also harm other animals as well.

About the Author


Melissa Lewis is a former elementary classroom teacher and media specialist. She has also written for various online publications. Lewis holds a Bachelor of Arts in psychology from the University of Maryland Baltimore County.