Burrowing moles can be a vexation to the soul of small-scale vegetable farmers. These little half-blind animals live underground and feed on the roots of plants. If you have a mole in your vegetable garden, it can cause serious damage to your plants and lower the crop yield.
Moles are usually most active during spring and autumn. In winter they dig deeper into the ground to escape the cold. They push up mounds of soil in your garden. Moles give birth in the beginning of spring. So, if you can repel them before the summer months, it will help you to control the mole population on your property. No matter how many heaps of soil you see, chances are that there are only one or two moles in that area. They are solitary animals and do not live in large groups.
The first step is to find the active tunnels. Start by flattening the mounds in the afternoon. If they are there again the next day, you know that those tunnels are the active ones and you should take action to repel the moles working them.
According to Dr Gerhard Verdoorn, director of the Griffon Poison Information Centre, the most effective product to use is the Mole Repellent marketed by Efekto. He explains that this product contains a 40% pure garlic extract that repels the moles and does not kill them.
“Putting whole garlic cloves into the holes might also help, but it is not as effective as a repellent to rid your lands of the moles,” says Dr Verdoorn. The Efekto Mole Repellent is sold by most co-ops, agricultural supply stores and nurseries throughout the country.
Moles live up to the age of three years but can be managed in their lifetime so that they do not damage your plants. If you can get rid of them before their babies are born, you should not have a problem with them for the rest of the season and give your yield a healthy boost!