How to Repel Gophers & Moles

Burrowing rodents like the gopher and mole can quickly destroy a lawn or garden. Both of these small mammals tunnel less than a foot below the surface of the ground and push the earth up, causing mounds to form. The smaller mole feeds almost constantly on insects and worms while its cousin, the gopher, feeds on plant materials like roots and other vegetation. There is a simple and natural repellent that is non-toxic and inexpensive to prepare.

Gophers and moles can damage a lawn quickly.

Mixture and Application

This effective repellent contains only two ingredients.

Mix the castor oil and dish soap in the empty 2-liter bottle. Shake until foamy. The bottle also serves as the storage bottle for the repellent. The ratio of castor oil to dish-washing soap is 2:1, if larger or smaller amounts are needed.

Spraying on the repellent is fast and easy.

Fill the spray applicator bottle with the repellent mixture and secure the applicator lid. Set the dial on the applicator bottle to use 2 tbsp. repellent per 1 gallon of water. If the dial only has light, medium and heavy settings, use the light setting. Attach the spray applicator bottle to the garden hose.

Step 3

Apply the repellent to all affected areas of the lawn, beginning with areas that show signs of tunneling and mounds. Reapply the repellent once or twice weekly and after any heavy rains until the ground shows signs of improvement and tunneling disappears.

Loren Estes

Loren Estes became a licensed wildlife rehabilitation professional for the Kentucky Department of Fish and Wildlife in 1998. She cares for wildlife native to Kentucky. In her spare time, Estes also lectures and volunteers for various nonprofit organizations involved in animal care and adoption.