Snakes are a natural part of many ecosystems and can be beneficial to a garden by keeping it free of rodents and pests. Yet not everyone wants these reptiles near the home or yard. If you want to get rid of snakes, you don't have to set traps or handle the creatures. Instead, you can take a few steps to repel snakes without ever directly interacting with the animal.
One of the easiest ways to repel snakes is to make the area unappealing to them. Snakes like to rest in cool, damp areas, so clear any piles of rocks, lumber or other debris where the animal could thrive. Keep your grass trimmed, and remove brush and shrubs from the area. After yard work, be sure to remove all clippings.
Along with keeping your yard tidy, ensure snakes can't enter your home or other buildings. Basements, crawl spaces and garages can be a tempting home for snakes, so ensure every building in the area is properly sealed. Check the exterior of doors, water pipes and windows for cracks and holes. Close any opening that is 1/4 inch or larger by filling it with a caulking compound, mortar or hardware cloth.
Repel snakes from your yard by building a snake fence. Buy a galvanized hardware cloth with a 1/4-inch mesh to construct the fence. It must be at least 36-inches high and be buried 6-inches deep with a 30-degree outward slant. Create a tight-fitting, sealing gate that people can use to enter the area. Cut any tree branches and plants away from the fence to keep snakes from climbing over it.
Control Rodents and Insects
A snake won't survive if it doesn't have anything to eat, so removing food sources is another way to repel snakes. Insects and rodents make up the majority of a snake's diet. Keep the critters out of your yard by storing all trash and waste in sealed containers. Also, don't leave any pet food outside that might attract rodents or insects.
Snake repellents are available at home and garden stores, and can be applied around an area to repel snakes using odors that simulate predators. Many of these formulas require the user to sprinkle or spray the repellent around gardens, homes and sidewalks every few weeks. The snakes will smell the repellent and should stay away.