The best DIY opossum repellent solutions!

Opossum repellent
The best opossum repellent strategy is to erect a physical barrier, which you then support with deterrent sprays. You can erect possum-proof fencing around your property’s perimeters or use covers for individual plants.

While a part of the natural ecosystem, opossums are pests you want to keep away around your yard and garden. Like skunks, raccoons, and groundhogs, possums are nuisance animals that cause unwanted odors, damage, and may carry pests and other diseases.

Therefore, if you have an opossum problem and do not have the funds to call a pest control expert or company, this guide will give you the best DIY opossum repellent solutions.

Let’s dive in!

What are opossums?

Opossums are marsupials meaning that a female opossum carries her pup in a pouch on the stomach.

They’re usually nocturnal, although you may spot one to look for food if necessary during the day. Also, they’re solitary animals meaning a mother with her babies is likely the only opossum group you’ll see.

Opossums are omnivores and eat vegetables, berries, amphibians, eggs, birds, fish, animal remains, critters, reptiles, and small mammals. They also consume ticks and play a key role in maintaining the ecosystem and managing pests.

Best opossum repellants

Here are some common possum deterrent ideas, from sprays to natural repellents, that you can do yourself to keep possums at bay. These tips won’t harm them but will keep them off your garden, yard, home, and plants.

  • Molasses
  • Spicy mix
  • Quassia chips
  • Mothballs
  • Sprinkler
  • Onion and garlic
  • Camphor
  • Animal-derived fertilizers
  • Predator urine
  • Fish oil
  • Hot peppers

Always avoid catching or trapping possums as laws regulate harming the animal. Also, please assume they’re always dangerous.

opossum in a trap

Tips on how to deter opossums from your garden

There are many solutions out there that are believed to deter opossums from your garden. Some include hanging CDs, spotlights, predator urine, tea, molasses, etc. However, none of these methods have a reliable or lasting effect. That said, two primary ways to successfully repel possums from your garden exist.

The best method is to erect a physical barrier, and then apply deterrent sprays. You can erect possum-proof fencing around your property’s perimeters or use covers for individual plants. The fencing should be a 2.5m high wire fence with a tall floppy wire to make it impossible for opossums to climb into your garden or property.

Protective sprays are another effective way to protect your plants from possums. You can easily purchase a commercial repellent spray, which you’ll apply to plant growth such as new buds, leaves, and shoots. These sprays do not harm plants, pets, or possums.

What smell do possums hate?

The most natural and DIY opossum deterrents are effective because they affect their taste, smell, or both. Possums detest pungent smells, so the stinker, the better. Below are the smells that you can use to deter possums:

  • Camphor
  • Mothballs
  • Onion
  • Garlic
  • Fish smell
  • Predator urine
  • Ammonia
  • Naphthalene
possum walking through dry ground

Will bleach keep opossums away?

No natural and traditional repellent is fully adequate to deter possums, but the smell of ammonia or bleach will deter opossums.

A solution of bleach and water can discourage opossums from your property, yard, or garden. Remember that you’ll also smell it too; this is not an ideal long-term solution.

What plants keep possums away?

As previously stated, possums have an acute sense of smell, and plants that emit pungent smells will repel them. These plants include:

  • Mothballs
  • Hot chilies
  • Garlic
  • Molasses
  • Camphor balls
  • Onion

What will scare possums away?

Possums are easily scared, “playing possum” by playing dead and freezing when frightened. However, they’ll recover after twenty minutes and will rise and runoff. Here’s some things that can help scare possums away:

  • Helium balloons around the yard swaying in the wind
  • Placing pinwheels in your yard
  • Setting up an oscillating fan in the garden
  • LED and bright lights
  • Motion-activated deterrents such as sprinklers
  • Predator urine
  • Cayenne pepper
  • Loud noises
opossum in a tree nook covered in snow

What attracts possums to your yard in the first place?

Possums are nuisance animals that will not harm your family or pets but can spread diseases and trash your home while searching for food. Possums are attracted to your yard if they can find a ready source of food and shelter.

This source could be pet food stored outside your home, trash cans, garbage cans, and chicken coops. They can also enter your house through crawl spaces and hide in basements or attics.

To deter them, always ensure the entry points are well sealed off or spiked with any smells they hate, such as ammonia. Possums are pest animals that can cause havoc in your yard.

If none of the methods works, it’s advisable to use chemical repellents, call a possum exterminator, or reach out to an opossum removal company.

Opossums and their role in the environment

As omnivores, opossums can eat almost everything. However, their love for ticks, where an average opossum can eat 5,000 ticks annually, makes them ideal for managing pests within their habitats.

They control the tick population that can spread Rocky Mountain spotted fever, and Lyme disease, two dangerous ailments resulting from tick bites. In addition, opossums maintain a healthy environment and ecosystem by eating rats, cockroaches, mice, and dead animals known as carrion.


Joseph Wales is a professional SEO content writer specializing in pest control, varmint removal, pets, and everything in nature. When not publishing, he’s busy teaching college and university students how to write admission essays and structure their academic papers. Writing has always been his passion, and he spends most of his time outdoors with his two lovely daughters in his spare time. He is also a skilled farmer, always traveling to his rural home to check on the livestock and corn field when he has the time. Armed with hands-on experience, Joseph uses his SEO writing skills to communicate accurate and engaging information that will also be valuable and educational, adding to the value of his readers.

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