Possums are adorable when they are climbing trees and dashing across electrical wires. But it can be frustrating when they are munching on your home-grown fruit and vegetables or keeping you up at night by dancing on the roof.
Fortunately, I'm sure the Workshop community can come to the rescue of anyone struggling with neighbourhood possums.
What are your tips for keeping possums out of your garden or away from your house?
I can tell you one thing that doesn't work - those plastic owls.
I would try odour repellants based on this:
"A recent Deakin University study into 14 alleged taste and odour repellents found that when possums were hungry none of the taste repellents tested stopped them from eating what they wanted. But five of the 10 odour repellents appeared to have some effect. These included naphthalene flakes, blood and bone, and garlic spray."
Spotlights with motion detectors can work well. You just need to know which trees or wires the possums are using to get into your garden and position the lights accordingly. They will soon avoid the area.
I have heard that sprinkling chilli powder or some other spicy/hot powder on the fruit or vegies that they are eating will deter them. I haven't personally used it but have heard it from many sources.
You just need to ensure you wash the fruit and vegies before you eat them!
I've had some real success with bark chips from the quassia tree, which is a plant found in the West Indies. (No, not that plant found in the West Indies, I said the quassia tree.)
The bark contains a very bitter resin, which the plant uses as an insect repellant, but if you boil the bark chips, you end up with a very bitter liquid you can use as a spray which will make your plants taste horrible to a possum, or pretty much an other sentient being.
I've used this stuff to protect an ornamental grapevine. I had problems with possums eating all the new growth (they would much on it as an entree on their way to visiting a fruiting loquat further down the fence). I started spraying the quassia bark spray, and the possums soon learnt my grapevine wasn't as tasty as they thought it might be.
I purchased my bark chips from Herb Cottage in QLD, and their website gives more info on how to make up a spray and apply it:
Welcome to Workshop. It's great to have you join us as one of our founding members. I hope you find the site useful and thank you for already sharing your knowledge and experience with others.
Looking forward to reading more about your projects soon.
My dog is the self-appointed 'possum hunter' in our household.
He can smell them from a mile away and loves jumping up on the fence barking at them...drives us mad.
The family of possums who were living in our courtyard have now moved to the tree across the road to escape from him! Problem solved
I recently got recommended this - SCAT.
Must give it a try with the spring vegetables.
This is an interesting idea - Whites Garden Sentinel Motion Activated Pest Deterrent
Whites Bird Spike Pest Control Garden Sentinel is a useful tool to protect your crops, gardens, backyards, ponds and other open areas from unwanted animals in a safe and humane way. The smart infrared sensor activates a three-second burst of water with adjustable angle, range, and sensitivity. It has a garden hose attachment and optional eye and beak labels.
Anyone tried it? Or had success with other methods?