Do Squirrels Eat Lilac?
Flower gardening can be a rewarding experience, providing beauty to any landscape, and lilacs are no exception. While many assume that lilacs are deer resistant, they may not know that they can be susceptible to squirrel damage as well!
In this article, we will discuss the answer to the question: do squirrels eat lilac? We will also discuss how to identify damage caused by squirrels, strategies for preventing and protecting against squirrel damage, and much more! So let’s get started!
What is a Lilac?
Lilacs are woody shrubs in the genus Syringa, which belongs to the olive family of plants. They are native to Europe and Asia but have been cultivated for centuries in North America for their stunningly beautiful purple or white flower clusters and pleasing scent that attracts pollinators such as bees and butterflies. In addition to their aesthetic value, lilacs provide food sources for birds, small mammals, and even humans can enjoy their edible flowers and leaves!
What Do Squirrels Eat?
Squirrels are omnivores, meaning they consume both plant-based foods (fruits, nuts) and animal-based foods (insects). They are also known as “scavengers” because they will take advantage of any food source available – including your garden!
In terms of plant-based food sources, squirrels prefer high-energy foods such as nuts and fruits with sweet flavorings that contain simple sugars like fructose and glucose (e.g., corn kernels). However, if these food sources become scarce, they may turn to other plants in your garden for sustenance – including your beloved lilacs!
Why Do Squirrels Eat Lilac?
There are several reasons why squirrels may choose to chow down on your lilacs: availability of food sources, nutrient content of the plant material itself, or simply out of curiosity (they do love variety!). In terms of availability of food sources – if other favored sources such as nuts or fruits are scarce in your garden or area then they may see your lilacs as an attractive option due to its high sugar content mentioned earlier, this is particularly true during wintertime when natural food sources become scarce due to seasonal changes (frost kills off their preferred foods).
Additionally, lilacs contain several nutrients that attract the attention of squirrels such as phosphorus and potassium which helps them maintain strong bones/teeth/muscles while providing essential energy levels needed for survival, this could be another reason why they might be tempted by its sweet aroma! Finally – curiosity could play a role too – after all who doesn’t like something new every now and then?!
Prevention of Squirrel Damage to Lilacs
The best way to prevent squirrel damage is by making sure there are no other attractive food sources available in your garden or area, this means making sure there is no fallen fruit lying around or unsecured bird feeders/garbage cans nearby which could attract them instead!
Additionally you can place barriers around the base of your lilac shrubs such as chicken wire fencing or plastic netting which should help deter them from accessing the shrub while still allowing air circulation through it (important for good growth!).
Finally you can also try using repellents either directly on the shrub itself or around its perimeter, there are many commercial products available but you can also make your own using ingredients such as garlic powder mixed with water – just make sure you reapply it every few weeks if necessary!
How To Identify Damage From Squirrels
It can often be difficult to identify if it’s a squirrel or another animal causing damage because they all share similar habits, however there are some telltale signs you can look out for which could indicate it’s likely being caused by a squirrel: bark stripping from lower portions of the shrub (they like climbing up high first before coming back down), chewed leaves/flowers/buds (they have sharp incisors designed for gnawing), footprints around the base (their hind feet have four toes plus one clawed thumb), droppings near feeders/bird houses etc.(these tend be slightly larger than other animals’ droppings).
Nutrients in Lilac That Attract Squirrels
As mentioned earlier lilacs provide an attractive source of sustenance due their high sugar content plus essential minerals like phosphorus & potassium, these minerals help support strong bones/teeth/muscles while providing energy levels needed for survival during winter months when natural food sources become scarce – making them even more attractive than other plants in your garden!
Additionally some varieties may produce berries which would give them an additional source of nutrition during lean times – so watch out if you see any berry-producing varieties near where you live!
Repellents As A Solution To Deterring Squirrels From Eating Lilac
Repellents serve two purposes when trying to keep away pesky critters: firstly they help deter them from coming near the area due their unpleasant smell/taste, secondly if applied correctly on a regular basis they act as a reminder that this isn’t an attractive place for them anymore so it will hopefully keep them away over time too!
There are many commercial products available but you can also make your own using ingredients such as garlic powder mixed with water – just make sure you reapply it every few weeks if necessary!
How To Protect Lilacs From Squirrel Damage
In addition to repellents there are some physical solutions you can employ too: chicken wire fencing placed around the base should help deter access while still allowing air circulation through, plastic netting works well too although it needs replacing more often due its susceptibility to weathering, finally wrapping tree trunks with metal sheeting should stop any climbing attempts while still allowing photosynthesis through too – just make sure everything is secure so animals cannot access inside otherwise it won’t work!
In conclusion we have discussed whether squirrels eat lilac shrubs and what strategies we can use both physically and chemically when trying to protect our beloved gardens against these pesky critters! We hope this article has been useful in helping you identify possible signs of damage caused by squirrel activity plus providing methods on how best keep them away so our gardens remain beautiful all year round – happy gardening everyone!!