How Can I Get Rid of Moles in My Lawn?
Signs of Moles in the Lawn
Moles can cause damage to a landscape, including turfgrass, small annual plants, and paver patios or walkways. They tunnel unseen through the top few inches of soil in search of prey and leave a trail of damage behind them. In a lawn, the tunnels appear as narrow ridges that may have a small hole here or there where the mole popped its head out. In a lawn with a lot of mole activity, the surface may feel spongy as it is walked upon. These are clear signs of a mole problem.
This photo shows an example of what you may see if you have moles in your yard.
Eradicating the Moles
Many homeowners think that applying a grub control solution will get rid of moles. Unfortunately, this rarely seems to work, though you will find pest control companies and plenty of information all over the web that tell you this is a good solution. They say killing the food source of moles will send the moles elsewhere, but grubs are just one thing that moles eat. Moles also enjoy earthworms, slugs, snails, centipedes, millipedes, and other juicy insects in your soil that are beneficial for your turfgrass and other landscape plants.
Applying an insecticide that would kill all of the life in your soil would be a setback for your turfgrass and landscape plants, and most insecticides are either acutely toxic to people and pets or they are water contaminates. Crownover Green does not recommend applying insecticides to eradicate moles.
We have had many clients who have had moles, and we don’t know of any who completely got rid of the moles by killing bugs. There are also some amusing home remedies that you can read about on blogs and forums around the web. We have not experimented with all of these and are not aware of studies that have tested them.
The proven and reliable way to eradicate moles is to kill the moles.
Hiring a Professional
The hassle-free method for eradicating moles is to contact a professional critter control service that will have the expertise to trap the moles. A general pest control company may offer grub control as the first step. They may show you some grubs in your lawn and indicate that this is the source of your mole problem. However, grubs are a normal part of a soil ecosystem. Too many of them can be a problem, but grubs are not inherently a problem. When applying grub control doesn’t eradicate the moles they’ll offer additional services at additional costs. Find a pro that addresses the problem directly.
Do It Yourself (DIY) Options
If you are a DIYer, there are several products available at garden centers. If you really don’t want to kill the moles and are not expecting total eradication, then you could try mole deterrents. Options include sonic spikes and castor oil repellents that act as deterrents. You may need to use both deterrents indefinitely and reapply repellents regularly to keep your lawn inhospitable for the moles.
Other options include traps, gassers, and poisonous baits to kill the moles. Our recommendation is to use a trap, because it is the only method that provides verifiable proof when you got one.
Whatever DIY option you might choose, follow the label instructions closely to get results. Moles tend to be active year-round but usually burrow deeper into the soil during the coldest period of winter in our climate zone. Anytime you are seeing mole activity on the surface of your lawn is a good time to address the problem.