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Armadillo's in the Garden

Hello Gardeners, I’m Amanda McNulty with Clemson Extension and Making It Grow.  Not long after I spotted a dead armadillo on the Calhoun County side of the Congaree River, a new problem came to my garden -- dozens of small, random holes, several inches deep and about two to three inches wide.  . I have been mulching with coastal Bermuda hay and don’t till at all – so I have a wonderful population of larvae – the main diet of armadillos. The pointy little nose of an armadillo is exceptionally keen – they can smell insects that are buried six inches under the soil and they use their nose and tongue to retrieve them. That extraordinary sense of smell provides one  way to deter them – putting out  very hot chopped up peppers or spraying pepper solutions can give temporary relief.  If you haven’t had an armadillo visit yet, count yourself lucky as they are here to stay!

Amanda McNulty is a Clemson University Extension Horticulture agent and the host of South Carolina ETV’s Making It Grow! gardening program. She studied horticulture at Clemson University as a non-traditional student. “I’m so fortunate that my early attempts at getting a degree got side tracked as I’m a lot better at getting dirty in the garden than practicing diplomacy!” McNulty also studied at South Carolina State University and earned a graduate degree in teaching there.