Rent Shop Volunteer Join

Q. Who is Mr. Smarty Plants?

A: There are those who suspect Wildflower Center volunteers are the culpable and capable culprits. Yet, others think staff members play some, albeit small, role. You can torture us with your plant questions, but we will never reveal the Green Guru's secret identity.

Help us grow by giving to the Plant Database Fund or by becoming a member

Did you know you can access the Native Plant Information Network with your web-enabled smartphone?

Share

Ask Mr. Smarty Plants

Ask Mr. Smarty Plants is a free service provided by the staff and volunteers at the Lady Bird Johnson Wildflower Center.

Search Smarty Plants
See a list of all Smarty Plants questions

Please forgive us, but Mr. Smarty Plants has been overwhelmed by a flood of mail and must take a break for awhile to catch up. We hope to be accepting new questions again soon. Thank you!

Need help with plant identification, visit the plant identification page.

 
rate this answer
Not Yet Rated

Wednesday - August 27, 2008

From: Reston, VA
Region: Mid-Atlantic
Topic: Diseases and Disorders
Title: Chipmunk in the garden.
Answered by: Joe Marcus

QUESTION:

Hi Mr. Smarty Plants, I have a rogue chipmunk this year (never had one before doing this) who is eating roots and digging holes in all my plant containers. I have tried Plant Skyd (excellent deer repellent), ginger, garlic and forks with the prongs up. Nothing seems to work. Do you have any ideas, brilliant or otherwise, that would deter this annoying, but cute animal?

ANSWER:

It's probably Alvin; he's the troublemaker of the bunch. 

Chipmunks are best controlled by relocation.  It is fairly easy to catch them in live traps (heavy-guage wire mesh traps with trap doors) and relocate them to an area away from civilization.  However, some municipalities prohibit live trapping of wild animals by unlicensed individuals.  So it would be a good idea to check before putting out a trap.  You can find sources for traps by entering "live small animal traps" in a Google search.  Peanut butter makes an excellent chipmunk bait that is not easily removed from the trap.

If you do not wish to do it yourself or if you're prohibited by local laws from trapping the chipmunk, many exterminators offer a removal service.

 

More Diseases and Disorders Questions

Sap oozing from trunks of Cherry Laurels in Austin, TX
January 24, 2015 - I have several mature compact cherry laurels whose leaves are beginning to turn yellow. They are in raised beds, have been properly fertilized, have compost spread around them, and are properly water...
view the full question and answer

Knots on redbuds in Stillwell, OK
April 07, 2011 - My redbud has knots all over the limbs. Its been this way for a few years now. I can not find a way to take care of this problem. I don't even know what is causing this. Can you help me?
view the full question and answer

Problems with a Cercis (Redbud)
August 25, 2014 - Half of my redbud tree is pooped out looking. On two places on the bark are areas where a few layers of bark have pulled back. In these areas there are white growths.
view the full question and answer

Getting rid of algae on dirt and patio
January 12, 2011 - Algae and on patio and dirt, and how to get rid of same?
view the full question and answer

Smarty Plants on fungal attack
October 12, 2005 - I have three plants that have been getting fungus on their soil and I've tried to get rid of it by scraping it off, watering it less and more sunlight. It's two coleus and a begonia. I don't know...
view the full question and answer

Support the Wildflower Center by Donating Online or Becoming a Member today.