Is Repels-All Safe for Vegetable Gardens?

Animals can be a nuisance, and when left unchecked, they can quickly decimate your garden, leaving you frustrated, confused, and with little to show for your hard work. Repels-All is a common remedy designed to keep pests away from your plants. But how safe is it to use in your vegetable garden?

Repels-All is safe to use on vegetable gardens when used as directed and applied around the garden perimeter. However, you shouldn’t apply it directly to plants intended for eating—and it is unsuitable for indoor use. It may cause skin or eye irritation and reactions in those with egg allergies. 

In this comprehensive guide, I will discuss everything you need to know about using Repels-All around your vegetable garden, including how Repels-All works, its ingredients, and how to apply it. Let’s dive in!

Safety Concerns for Repels-All

While Repels-All is safe for the environment and used around vegetables, there are a few things you should keep in mind when using the repellent:

Do Not Apply Directly to Plants

Repels-All is safe for vegetables but should not be applied directly to them if you intend to consume the vegetables. The repellent can also cause leaf burn if it comes into contact with plants.

Do Not Inhale

Avoid inhaling the fumes when mixing or applying Repels-All. If you must use the repellent in a confined space, wear a mask to avoid breathing it in. 

Eye and Skin Irritation

Repels-All all may cause eye and skin reactions if you incorrectly handle the product. Be sure to use the product according to the manufacturer’s instructions.

Consult Your Local or State Wildlife Agency

If you are using Repels-All in an area frequented by deer, rabbits, or other wildlife, you should consult your local or state wildlife agency to know if there are any required permits. The last thing you want is to harm wildlife or incur a fine inadvertently.

Disposing of Empty Containers

Once you have finished using Repels-All, dispose of any empty containers properly. Do not reuse the container for any other purpose. Rinse the container with water and place it in the trash.

Egg Allergies

Repels-All contains eggs that may cause an allergic reaction in those with a severe egg allergy. Avoid using this product if you’re allergic to eggs.

Tips for Using Repels-All Safely for Vegetables

To get the most out of using Repels-All around your vegetable garden, you must use it correctly. The inadequate application will result in poor results, leaving your plants vulnerable to pests.

Follow these tips for the best results:

Follow the Manufacturer’s Directions

Read and follow the manufacturer’s instructions carefully. On the Repels-All bottle, you will find specific instructions on how to mix and apply the repellent. It would be best to read and follow these instructions carefully to ensure proper application.

Wear Protective Gear When Handling

While Repels-All is safe to use around vegetables, you should take precautions when using the repellent. Wear gloves, a long-sleeved shirt, and goggles to avoid skin or eye contact.

Mix the Repellent Correctly

Be sure to mix the repellent according to the manufacturer’s instructions. Do not alter the repellent or water ratio you use, as this can result in poor results. Determine your garden’s size to determine how many repellents you need by multiplying the length by width. 

Apply It Around the Perimeter and in Problem Areas

For best results, apply repellent around the edge of your garden and in problem areas. Sprinkle the repellent 6-8 inches (15.24-20.32 cm) wide to create a barrier.

Focus on areas where pests are known to enter or where you typically see the damage. Get the repellent as close to the ground as possible without getting it on your plants.

Allow It to Dry

Let the repellent dry entirely for about 6 hours to stick to surfaces and create an invisible barrier. Avoid watering to prevent the repellent from washing away.

How to Safely Store Unused Repels-All

If you have unused Repels-All, store it properly to ensure its effectiveness. Store the repellent in a cool, dry place out of reach of children and pets. For diluted unused repellent, avoid storing it in the sprayer for more than 24 hours as the active ingredients will start to break down, reducing its effectiveness.

Instead, determine how much Repels-All you need and mix only that amount—store the rest of the repellent in a tightly sealed container in a cool, dry place. When you properly store the product—Repels-All will remain effective for up to 2 years.

How Repels-All Works

Repels-All is a non-toxic, biodegradable repellent that combines essential oils and other natural ingredients to keep pests away from your plants. The working principle behind Repels-All is simple—the fragrances in the repellent irritate the pests’ senses, causing them to stay away from the treated area.

Being a barrier treatment, you should apply Repels-All around the perimeter of the vegetable garden and any areas where you think the pests could enter. When the animals come close to the treated area, the scent will repel them, and eventually, they will learn to stay away from your garden altogether.

Repels-All is effective against a wide range of animals, including:

  • Deer
  • Rabbits
  • Squirrels
  • Dogs
  • Cats
  • Rats
  • Mice
  • Chipmunks
  • Beaver
  • Skunks
  • Raccoons
  • Porcupines
  • Birds

It’s also environmentally safe and will not harm your plants when used as directed.

Ingredients in Repels-All

Ingredients are the “magic” behind any product, and Repels-All is no different. The combination of ingredients in Repels-All makes it so effective at repelling pests.

The main ingredients in Repels-All are:

  • Garlic oil
  • Putrescent whole egg solids
  • Fish oil
  • Dried blood
  • Cloves
  • Onions
  • Wintergreen oil
  • Seaweed
  • Meat meal
  • Acetic acid
  • Vanillin

These ingredients work together to create a potent scent that irritates the animal’s taste, smell, nose, and eyes, triggering their natural flight response.

When to Use Repels-All in Vegetable Gardens

Apply Repels-All around your vegetable garden when you start noticing animal damage or when you see animals in the area. This problem becomes more evident in late fall when animals seek food and warmth before winter.

Common animal damage signs include:

  • Gnawing on plants
  • Biting off leaves
  • Digging in the soil
  • Eating seeds and seedlings
  • Uprooted plants
  • Burrows
  • Tracks
  • Droppings

Apply during dry weather, as rain or dew will wash away the repellent. Allow 6 hours for the repellent to dry before watering. Reapplication is necessary after heavy rain, downpour, or frequent watering.

How to Safely Use Repels-All in Your Gardens

Applying Repels-All is a relatively simple process that requires no special skills or equipment.

Here is a detailed step-by-step guide on how to use Repels-All around your vegetable garden:

1. Gather Your Supplies

To use Repels-All around your vegetable garden, you will need the following supplies:

  • A bottle of Repels-All (32oz or 0.95 liters)
  • Trigger spray bottle
  • Water
  • Mixing bucket
  • Gloves and eye goggles

You can purchase Repels-All from your local garden center or online.

2. Determine How Much Repellant You Will Need

The amount of repellent you will need depends on the size of your vegetable garden. Calculate the square footage of your garden by multiplying the length by the width.

One bottle of Repels-All will be sufficient for smaller gardens (up to 500 sq ft / 46 sq m). You may need two bottles for more extensive gardens (500 – 1000 sq ft or 46 – 92.9 sq m).

3. Mix the Repellent

Wear protective gear before handling the repellent. Gloves, a long-sleeved shirt, and goggles will suffice. These will protect you from the potent scent of the repellent.

Follow the manufacturer’s instructions on the Repels-All bottle to mix the repellent:

  1. Pour the required amount of Repels-All into the mixing bucket.
  2. Add an equal amount of water and stir well to mix the ingredients.
  3. Ensure you dissolve all the granules before moving on to the next step.

4. Apply Repels-All Around the Perimeter

Starting at one corner, slowly walk around your garden while evenly sprinkling the repellent using a trigger spray bottle. Sprinkle 6-8 inches (15.24-20.32 cm) wide around the perimeter of your garden to create a barrier. 

Go around obstacles such as trees and bushes. As you near the end, overlap the beginning by a few feet (0.61+ m) to ensure complete coverage. Avoid getting the repellant on your vegetables or fruits.

5. Apply Repels-All in Problem Areas

In addition to the perimeter of your garden, you should also apply the repellent in problem areas. These are places where pests are known to enter or where you typically see the damage.

Common problem areas include:

  • Garden sheds
  • Woodpiles
  • Garbage cans
  • Barns
  • Decks and patios
  • Fence lines
  • Around the base of trees

6. Monitor Your Plants

Even with the repellent in place, monitoring your garden regularly for signs of pests is crucial. Check your plants daily for damage and look for burrows, tracks, or droppings. Take action immediately if you see any pests in your garden.

You can apply another layer of repellent to spot-treat problem areas.

The Bottom Line

Repels-All is an effective and safe repellent for use around vegetable gardens. It creates an invisible barrier that irritates the animal’s senses and prevents them from entering your property. Follow the manufacturer’s instructions carefully when handling the repellent to ensure effectiveness and avoid accidents. 

Consult your local or state wildlife agency if you use the repellent in an area frequented by deer, rabbits, or other wildlife. Remember to store the repellent in a cool, dry place out of reach of children and pets. Repels-All will protect your garden from pests all season long with proper use.

Dr. Moritz Picot

Dr. Moritz Picot is a horticulture enthusiast and the founder of, where he serves as the lead content writer. He established the website in 2022 as a valuable resource for both gardening aficionados and beginners, compiling all the gardening tips he has accumulated over the past 25 years. Alex has a passion for nurturing plants, transforming backyards into inviting spaces, and sharing his knowledge with the world.

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