how to keep birds out of hanging plants

How To Keep Birds Out Of Hanging Plants – 6 Effective Ways To Keep Birds Away

Last Updated: May 31, 2023By

Hanging plants can be a beautiful addition to any garden or outdoor space, but they also attract birds who love to perch and nest in them. Not only can this cause damage to your precious plants, but it may lead to unwanted noise and mess from the feathery visitors.

In this blog post, we’ll explore six effective ways you can keep birds out of your hanging plants without causing harm to our feathered friends. From bird repellent sprays to alternative nesting options, these methods will help protect your hanging baskets while keeping the peace with nature.

Key Takeaways

  • There are several reasons why birds may be attracted to nesting in hanging plants, including seeking shelter and a food source. By identifying what attracts them, you can take preventative measures such as watering regularly and choosing insect-resistant varieties of flora.
  • Effective ways to keep birds out of your hanging plants include using bird netting or wire mesh, applying bird repellent spray, using visual deterrents like reflective tape or wind chimes, planting bird-repelling herbs, and utilizing aromatic oils. Combining multiple methods may increase the likelihood of success.
  • It is important to provide alternative nesting sites for birds around your yard by installing birdhouses or adding natural shelters like bushes and trees. This helps protect your hanging baskets while keeping the peace with nature. Additionally, regular maintenance is crucial to ensure the effectiveness of these methods over time.

Understanding Why Birds Nest In Hanging Plants

Birds nest in hanging plants because they provide shelter and nesting materials, as well as a potential food source for the birds and their offspring.

1. Seeking Shelter and Nesting Materials

Hanging plants provide an ideal environment for birds to seek shelter and gather nesting materials. The elevated position, along with the dense foliage, offers protection from predators and harsh weather conditions.

Birds are particularly attracted to hanging baskets filled with soft materials such as moss or coir liners.

To deter birds from using your hanging plants as their nesting headquarters, regularly check for any signs of nest construction such as twigs or grass clippings woven into the foliage.

Remove these at once so that they do not attract more birds looking to settle in this cozy abode.

2. Searching For A Food Source

Birds are known to be resourceful creatures, constantly on the lookout for their next meal. Hanging plants can inadvertently serve as a convenient food source for them, attracting various types of birds to come and feast within the comfort of your garden.

For instance, house finches are notorious for nesting in hanging baskets due to their preference for easily accessible insects hidden inside flowers or foliage. This not only puts your precious plants at risk but also encourages other birds to join the feast.

Methods For Keeping Birds Away From Hanging Baskets

There are several methods you can use to keep birds from nesting in your hanging baskets, including bird netting or wire mesh, reflective tape or wind chimes, and applying bird repellent sprays.

1. Use Bird Netting Or Wire Mesh

Using bird netting or wire mesh is an effective way to keep birds away from hanging plants and prevent them from nesting or causing damage. Here are some tips on using these materials to protect your plants:

  1. Choose a fine wire with about 1mm hole 20 mesh or light wire mesh for best results in keeping birds out.
  2. Wrap the chosen material around the entire hanging plant, ensuring there are no gaps for birds to enter.
  3. Secure the edges of the mesh or netting together using twist ties, zip ties, or other fasteners to create a barrier that birds cannot breach.
  4. Consider using bird netting during planting by covering the hanging basket with the light wire mesh, as this can help prevent birds from accessing the plants at any stage of growth.
  5. Regularly inspect your hanging planter for signs of wear and tear on the netting or mesh, repairing or replacing it as necessary to maintain its effectiveness.
  6. Use caution when watering plants covered in netting or wire mesh to avoid excess moisture buildup, which can potentially harm your plants over time.

By implementing these practices with bird netting or wire mesh, you can keep your hanging plants free of unwanted avian visitors and ensure their healthy growth.

2. Apply Bird Repellent Spray

Bird repellent spray is an effective way to keep birds out of hanging plants. This type of spray can be found at most hardware stores or online. Here are some tips for using bird repellent spray effectively:

  • Apply the repellent before any nesting activity begins.
  • Spray the plant early in the morning when there is less wind and humidity.
  • Apply the repellent evenly on both sides of the plant leaves, stems, and surrounding areas.
  • Reapply the spray after a heavy rain or every 10 days to ensure maximum effectiveness.
  • Avoid spraying in extreme temperatures (below freezing or above 90°F).
  • Ensure that pets and children are kept away from treated plants for a few hours after application.

By using bird repellent spray, you can protect your hanging plants from unwanted nesting and feeding activities by birds.

3. Hang Reflective Tape, Streamers Or Wind Chimes

Reflective materials can spook birds as they are easily startled by their reflections. To keep birds away from hanging plants, you can:

  1. Hang reflective tape around the base or basket of the hanging plant to deter birds from getting near it.
  2. Use streamers made of reflective materials that move in the wind to discourage birds from landing on the hanging plant.
  3. Install wind chimes near your hanging baskets to produce a calming sound that discourages birds from roosting.
  4. You can also hang small mirrors or CDs around your hanging plants to create reflective surfaces and scare away birds.
  5. Reflective tape not only helps keep birds away but also adds a unique style of decoration to the hanging plants.

Remember, when using reflective materials, ensure that they are placed in direct sunlight for maximum effectiveness.

4. Water The Plant Regularly

To help prevent birds from nesting in your hanging plants, it’s important to water them regularly. Here are some tips for watering your plant:

  1. Use a watering can with a spout to slowly and gently water the soil.
  2. Aim the spout at the base of the plant to avoid soaking the nest if there is one present.
  3. Water early in the morning or late in the evening when birds are less active.
  4. Do not overwater as this can attract insects and other pests that may harm the plant or attract more birds.

Regular watering not only helps deter birds from nesting in hanging plants, but it also helps keep your plant healthy and vibrant. Remember to be careful if there is a bird nest present and try not to disturb it while watering.

5. Place Fake Predatory Birds Or Animals As Decoys

Fake predatory birds or animals can be placed near hanging baskets to scare away birds from nesting in them. Here are some examples of decoys that can be used:

  • Rubber snakes: These can be hung from a nearby tree or placed on the ground near the hanging basket. Birds will often mistake them for real snakes and avoid the area.
  • Scarecrows: A well-placed scarecrow with an intimidating pose can keep birds away from your hanging plants.
  • Plastic owls: Owls are natural predators of many bird species, so placing a realistic-looking plastic owl near your planters can deter birds.

It is important to remember to move these decoys around occasionally as birds may become accustomed to their presence over time.

Natural Ways To Deter Birds

Another option for keeping birds away from your hanging plants is to utilize natural repellents, such as planting bird-repelling herbs like rosemary or lavender, or using aromatic oils like citronella or peppermint.

1. Plant Bird-repelling Herbs Such As Rosemary Or Lavender

One effective natural way to keep birds away from your hanging plants is by planting bird-repelling herbs. These plants contain strong scents that birds dislike, making them less likely to make a home in your hanging baskets. Some of the most effective bird-repelling herbs include:

  • Rosemary: This fragrant herb has a strong scent that is known to repel many birds and other pests.
  • Lavender: The sweet scent of lavender can help keep birds away while also adding beauty and color to your hanging plants.
  • Sage: Another aromatic herb, sage has a strong smell that can deter many types of birds.
  • Mint: Like other herbs on this list, mint has a strong scent that can deter birds and other pests from your hanging plants.

By planting these herbs in or near your hanging baskets, you may be able to discourage birds from nesting there. Additionally, these plants can add visual interest and fragrance to your outdoor space.

2. Use Aromatic Oils Like Citronella Or Peppermint

Peppermint and citronella oils emit strong, pungent odors that repel birds naturally. These oils can be used in the following ways:

  • Mix a few drops of peppermint oil with water and spray it on your hanging plants. This will create an unpleasant smell for birds, but it’s pleasant to humans.
  • Use citronella oil to spray the area around your planters. The scent of this oil is known to deter birds from building nests in your plants.
  • Place cotton balls soaked in peppermint oil inside your hanging basket or nearby. This will keep pests and birds away.
  • Add a few drops of peppermint or citronella oils into a diffuser or burner near your hanging planters. This helps disperse the scent throughout the area and repels nesting birds.

Using these aromatic oils helps keep birds away without harming them or causing any damage to the environment. Plus, these oils have other benefits too! Peppermint oil spray can also be used as a natural way to repel insects, rodents, birds, and wildlife all while freshening up your home with a minty aroma.

6 Effective Ways To Keep Birds Out Of Your Hanging Plants

Install bird netting or wire mesh, use visual deterrents like reflective tape or streamers, try bird spikes, apply bird repellent sprays and cover your plants with mesh or a cloth to keep birds away from your hanging baskets.

1. Install Bird Netting Or Wire Mesh

To prevent birds from nesting in your hanging plants, one of the most effective methods is to install bird netting or wire mesh. Here are some tips on how to do it:

  • Measure and cut the netting or mesh to fit the size of your hanging basket.
  • Attach the netting or mesh securely to the top of the basket using clips or ties.
  • Make sure there are no gaps between the surface of the soil and the bottom of the netting/mesh where birds can still access.
  • Adjust and check regularly to make sure there are no tears or damage that can allow birds through.

Bird netting and wire mesh are physical barriers that prevent birds from accessing your hanging plant. This method is easy to implement and does not require much maintenance. However, some may find it less aesthetically pleasing than other methods, so it ultimately depends on personal preference.

2. Use Visual Deterrents Like Reflective Tape Or Streamers

One effective way to keep birds away from your hanging plants is to use visual deterrents like reflective tape or streamers. Birds are often scared off by the shininess and movement of these items. Here are some tips for using them effectively:

  • Place reflective tape around the base or basket of the hanging plant.
  • Hang strips of aluminum foil or Mylar near the plant to create a shiny and moving decoration that will scare birds off.
  • Change up the location of the reflective tape or streamers every few days to prevent birds from becoming accustomed to them.
  • Be sure to use enough tape or streamers to cover the entire area where birds are landing and nesting.
  • Combine this method with other bird deterrents for best results.

Reflective tape is an affordable and easy way to keep birds from ruining your hanging plants. It’s important to note that while it can be effective, it should be used in combination with other methods such as netting or repellents for maximum effectiveness. Keeping birds away may take some experimentation, but with a little effort, you can enjoy beautiful hanging plants without worrying about bird damage.

3. Try Bird Spikes

Bird spikes are an effective way to prevent birds from perching on your hanging plants. They work by making it uncomfortable for birds to land and rest on the spikes. Here are some tips when using bird spikes:

  • Choose bird spikes made of stainless steel or plastic material, which are durable and long-lasting.
  • Install the bird spikes on top of your hanging planters, especially in areas where birds often perch or nest.
  • Make sure that the spikes cover the entire surface area of the hanging planter, leaving no gaps for birds to land.
  • Check the position of the bird spikes regularly to make sure they are still intact and working effectively.
  • Use caution when installing bird spikes and wear gloves, as they can be sharp and pose a hazard if not handled properly.

By using bird spikes in conjunction with other methods such as netting or repellent sprays, you can create an effective barrier and keep birds away from your hanging plants. Remember to prioritize the safety of both your plants and any wildlife by choosing humane deterrents that do not harm birds or other animals.

4. Apply Bird Repellent Sprays

Bird repellent sprays are an effective way to keep birds away from your hanging plants. These sprays work by emitting a scent or taste that birds find unpleasant, discouraging them from landing on or nesting in your plants. Here are some tips for applying bird repellent sprays:

  • Follow the manufacturer’s instructions carefully when using bird repellent sprays.
  • Use a mild and non – toxic spray to avoid harming the plants or other animals.
  • Spray the plant evenly, making sure to cover all parts of the leaves and stems.
  • Repeat the spraying process every few weeks or after rainfall to ensure effectiveness.
  • Avoid getting the spray on yourself as it can be irritating to skin and eyes.

Using bird repellent sprays is a simple yet effective way to keep birds away from your hanging plants. By doing so, you can protect both your plant and the environment while enjoying a beautiful garden.

5. Cover Your Plants With Mesh Or A Cloth

One effective way to keep birds out of your hanging plants is by covering them with mesh or a cloth. This will prevent the birds from landing and building nests inside the basket. Here are some tips on how to properly cover your plants:

  • Choose a fine mesh material that allows air and sunlight to pass through.
  • Cut the mesh fabric to fit over the top of the basket, making sure it covers all openings.
  • Secure the edges of the mesh with twine or clips to keep it in place.
  • If using a cloth, make sure it is lightweight and breathable. Drape it over the top of the basket and secure it with clips or pins so that it does not blow away in the wind.
  • Remember to regularly check underneath the covering for any signs of bird activity.

Covering your plants with mesh or a cloth is an easy and effective way to protect them from unwanted bird nests. By using this method in combination with other deterrents, you can create a bird-free zone for your hanging plants.

6. Choose Plants That Birds Do Not Like

To prevent birds from landing and nesting in your hanging plants, one effective approach is selecting plants that are less attractive to them. Here are some plant options:

  • Succulents: Birds tend to avoid prickly and thorny plants, making succulents an excellent option. Some examples include aloe vera, cacti, and jade plants.
  • Herbs: Strong-smelling herbs like rosemary, lavender, and sage can help deter birds from nesting in your hanging baskets.
  • Ferns: The texture of ferns is not appealing to birds, making them a good choice for hanging baskets. Boston ferns and maidenhair ferns are popular options.
  • Marigolds: These colorful flowers have a strong scent that birds do not like. They also repel other pests like mosquitoes and aphids.
  • Begonias: These vibrant blooms come in various colors and patterns, but they do not attract many birds due to their waxy leaves.

By choosing the proper plants for your hanging baskets, you can make it less likely for birds to make nests in them while still enjoying beautiful foliage or flowers.

Additional Tips For Keeping Birds Away

Keep your yard clean and tidy to remove potential bird food sources, provide alternative nesting sites or food options, and train your pets to help keep birds away.

1. Keep Your Yard Clean And Tidy

A clean and tidy yard can also discourage birds from nesting in your hanging plants. Here are some steps you can take to keep your yard clean:

  1. Clear away any debris such as fallen leaves, twigs, or branches that can provide nesting materials for birds.
  2. Keep garbage and compost bins securely covered to prevent birds from rummaging through them for food.
  3. Store birdseed or pet food in sealed containers to avoid attracting birds to the area.
  4. Trim overgrown bushes or trees that may provide perching or nesting spots for birds near your hanging plants.
  5. Clean up spilled food or water dishes regularly, especially near outdoor seating areas.

By keeping your yard clean and tidy, you can help reduce the appeal of your hanging baskets as a nesting spot for birds and encourage them to find alternative places to roost or nest.

2. Provide Alternative Food Sources

Birds are attracted to hanging plants because they often find food there. Here are some alternative food sources you can provide for birds to keep them away from your hanging baskets:

  • Install a bird feeder nearby and fill it with seeds or fruits that birds like.
  • Grow plants that produce berries or fruits, such as grapes, blueberries, or elderberries.
  • Hang a suet feeder containing high – fat food such as beef fat, cracked corn, or peanut butter mixed with cornmeal and flour.
  • Plant flowers that attract insects, which are a source of food for many birds. Examples include sunflowers, zinnias, and coneflowers.
  • Provide a water source such as a bird bath or small pond. Birds need water for drinking and bathing.

By providing alternative food sources for birds in your garden, you can help to reduce their interest in your hanging plants and deter them from nesting there.

3. Use Decoy Birds Or Predator Sounds To Scare Them Away

To deter birds from nesting in your hanging plants, using decoy birds or predator sounds can be an effective solution. Here are some options:

  • Statues of birds of prey: Place statues of hawks or owls near your hanging baskets or potted plants. Birds will mistake them for the real thing and avoid the area.
  • Decoy birds: A fake bird like a plastic crow or pigeon placed nearby can also fool other birds into thinking that the area is already taken.
  • Predator sounds: Play recordings of predatory bird calls like falcons or eagles to scare off other birds from the vicinity.

Remember to move these decoys around every few days to keep things unpredictable and avoid attracting unwanted attention from actual predators.

4. Train Your Pets To Help Keep Birds Away

To add another effective way to keep birds away from your hanging plants, you can also train your pets to help scare them off. Here are some tips:

  1. Use positive reinforcement: Reward your dog or cat with treats and praise when they successfully scare the birds away.
  2. Train them to respond to a command: Teach your pet a specific command such as “bird patrol” or “go get the birds” and encourage them to chase the birds away on cue.
  3. Make sure they are supervised: Don’t leave your pet outside alone as they may harm the birds or damage the plants.
  4. Use caution with cats: Keep in mind that cats are natural predators and may see the birds as prey, so use extra caution when training them.
  5. Consider using a leash: If you have a dog that is particularly good at scaring off birds, you could take them out on a leash specifically for this purpose.

By incorporating your furry friends into your anti-bird measures, you can effectively keep these feathered creatures from nesting in your hanging baskets and plants, while also enjoying quality time with your pets outdoors.

Conclusion – How To Keep Birds Out Of Hanging Plants

In conclusion, there are several effective ways to keep birds from nesting in your hanging plants. Adding a physical barrier like bird netting or wire mesh, using bird repellent spray, and placing visual deterrents like reflective tape or streamers can all help deter birds.

Natural remedies such as planting bird-repelling herbs and using aromatic oils may also be effective. Combining multiple methods may increase the likelihood of success in protecting your hanging planters.


1. Why are birds attracted to hanging plants?

Birds are naturally drawn to foliage and may see your hanging plants as a source of food, shelter or nesting material. Additionally, some species of birds have a tendency to be curious about new objects in their environment.

2. What are the best ways to prevent birds from accessing my hanging plants?

There are several effective methods for keeping birds out of your hanging plants, including installing bird netting around your plants, using decoys such as fake owls or snakes, applying bird repellent spray on the leaves and branches, using reflective tape or shiny objects near the plant area.

3. Are there any natural remedies I can use instead of chemical bird repellents?

Yes – there are several natural remedies that can help keep birds away from your hanging plants such as citrus peels placed around the pot (which emit an unpleasant odor), planting herbs like rosemary or lavender which have strong aromas that deter most birds and creating physical barriers around your plant by arranging rocks or other obstacles.

4. Should I remove my hanging plant if it’s attracting too many birds?

No – removing your plant is not necessarily required if you experience frequent visits from local bird populations! Instead consider implementing one of our above suggestions for shooing off these feathered friends while helping preserve beauty within living spaces :-)

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