Last Updated on June 23, 2022 by Gary Stephen
As gardeners, our biggest fear (apart from our prized orchards suddenly dropping) is the possibility of coming across a snake while weeding or cutting the grass. They can give you a tremendous fright, but apart from that they can be extremely dangerous and most gardeners prefer to rather keep them on the other side of the fence. So, if you have children, the idea of having a snake in your garden is enough to make you want to cut off the garden entirely. But don’t fret just yet. Although there are numerous snake repellent plants on the market today, a simple way to keep snakes away is by using simple sharp-smelling plants in your garden. Besides, they are some delicious one’s for your soup to boot!
Do these snake repellent plants work?
Oh, they most certainly do! But there is one catch. You’re going to have to plant quite a decent variety to ensure that all types of snakes are kept at bay. Certain smells simply won’t affect certain species of snakes, and your best bet is to ensure your border has a wide enough variety to repel all of them.
It may be a bit of trial and error at first, but soon enough you’ll have a good barrier to keep out those pesky snakes.
What about mothballs as snake-repellent plants?
In Mississippi, mothballs are considered the number 1 snake-repellent. And they don’t even work!
The reason why so many people use mothballs is due to the chemical Naphthalene. In many snake-repellents today, this chemical is a key component to keeping snakes at bay. Yet many tests have shown that although snake-repellents work, mothballs just can’t. Whether it’s due to the makeup of the mothball, or due to the potency not being strong enough, most snakes will slither right by a mothball without a second thought.
8 Snake-repellent plants
There are numerous types of plants you can get, but we’re picking the 8 best ones you can try first before expanding your snake-repelling horizons. What makes some of these plants particularly appealing is some of them are herbs and vegetables. Which means they are, above being a repellent quite useful in the kitchen.
The only problem is, most of them are not the most eye-catching plants to put on the border of your garden. Your garden is, after all, supposed to be eye-catching. But some of them are very pretty and combined with other plants, you might end up making quite a nice-looking barrier.
Without further ado here are 8 snake-repelling plants you can put in your garden:
Let’s start with a decent repellent and an excellent addition to the kitchen; onions. Snakes hate onions because of their sharp smell. They don’t make snakes cry, but the scent hits them quite hard and disorients them completely – giving them plenty to cry about.
Onions can also be harvested once a year for use in the kitchen, so another bonus for you! Just remember to plant them again or else you might have some unwanted visitors over for dinner. The only drawback of onions is they sure as heck aren’t pretty. But combining them with some of the other plants on this list should make up for it!
2. Garlic can be snake-repellent plants
Another excellent addition to your garden would be garlic. Once again, not as pretty as some other plants, but it is very effective against snakes. Much like the onions, the smell of garlic simply does not appeal to snakes, and they’ll scamper off the second they get a whiff.
Apart from being excellent in stew, garlic also leaves behind an oily substance. Should a snake slither over the garlic to get into the yard, the oil will stick to it working as a full-body repellent. Meaning it will need to take a wash, and won’t be visiting again soon.
Now let’s move on to a visual repellent.
Unlike the onion and the garlic, the mother-in-law’s tongue is simply put, ugly for a snake. They don’t like the look of it, and they’ll slither away to find a garden with better taste. Although it might look better than garlic and onion, it’s not the most effective barrier. But if you use it in conjunction with say, the garlic or onions, you’ll have a pretty border and a double repellent for snakes.
Also, the mother-in-law’s tongue is an easy-care-for plant. It asks for very little water and just needs a sunny spot to be happy.
4. Green chiretta as snake-repellent plants
Asia also has some excellent snake-repellents. The green chiretta is an Asian herb with quite a fiercely bitter taste. It is called the King of Bitter. According to some, snakes who slither through the green plants, end up with swollen skin. So they don’t like these plants.
Green chiretta will prefer a sunny spot in your garden and likes to keep its feet wet Once it gets going, it grows quite quickly and can reach up to 42 inches in length.
It’s also known as a natural remedy for sinuses and fevers. If you’re planning on going all-natural, this one might be an excellent addition to your garden.
Let’s go back to the kitchen. Lemongrass works especially well against snakes for its sharp citrus smell. They also work quite effectively against mosquitos and other bugs, so if you live in Louisiana or the Mississippi, you’re going to want to get some Lemongrass in your garden.
It likes well-drained soil with lots of sun, and enjoys a few trims now and again to encourage new growth!
It’s also a nice herb to use in certain dishes and can be used in teas. So another win for the kitchen!
6. White Snakeroot
Snakeroot is quite aptly named! Spread wide across Asia and parts of America, snakes can’t stand this little plant. It doesn’t smell as sharply as garlic or lemongrass, but instead has a component called reserpine which causes the snake to become dizzy and slow down its heart rate.
There have been no cases of snakes dying of snakeroot, but they sure don’t like them.
The white snakeroot likes shady spots with nice wet feet, so they should be ideal to put at the border of your garden!
7. Pink agapanthus as snake-repellent plants
Pretty and sweet-smelling, pink agapanthus is an ideal plant for any garden. It’s easy to care, has very little demand in the way of soil, and can grow up to 3 feet in length! The sweet smell of the agapanthus is not as appealing to snakes as it is for us.
Although called the pink agapanthus, they do come in quite a wide range of colors. Also, like our earlier green chiretta, the pink agapanthus can be used as a natural remedy for sinuses.
Saving the best for last!
Marigold is gosh-darn beautiful and probably the most effective snake-repellent on our list.
Much like the garlic and onions, this little plant will chase away snakes with its distinct smell. A lot of pests and other insects can’t stand the smell either, so it’s a win-win overall! Combining this plant with one or two others should make a perfect barrier against those snakes.
Marigold are extremely hardy plants and should survive in most climates. They also don’t need a lot in the way of care. Because they are so tough you won’t need to water them frequently, only during long droughts.
What makes the marigold so wonderful is it’s just so beautiful and ideal to plant on the border of your garden.
A few other tips to keep snakes off your garden
Planting snake-repellents is an excellent way to keep snakes off your garden, but make sure snakes don’t have a reason to come into your garden in the first place; mice. Try to keep the garden clean and tidy, no piles of leaves, no warm spots under your garden shed, and no delicious grain bags mice can get into for a quick meal. And cut the grass frequently!
Stemming the mice population will also help with snakes. So keep a clean shop to keep those snakes out!
Wrapping Up about Snake-Repellent Plants
Snakes are a nightmare for any gardener, especially in the areas of America where we get some seriously poisonous ones. Thankfully there are many different plants you can try to ward off these serpents. But combining a wide variety of these plants is your best bet. Try to experiment to find out what works best in your area. Not all of these plants will grow where you live, and sometimes local knowledge is the best pool to dip into. Ask around! You might just find the best repellent out there!
It just takes some careful planning and a bit of extra planting, and you can easily repel snakes out of your garden, and have some extra ingredients for the pot as well!