How to Control Possums in Melbourne 119

Possums are the bane of most gardeners, in the leafy inner eastern suburbs of Hawthorn, Kew, Camberwell, Malvern, Toorak, Glen Iris and beyond. I frequently get asked the best way to “deal with them”. Here’s my thoughts on the issue and how best to stop them damaging your garden.

How to control possums melbourne

Why do we have a possum problem in Melbourne?

Many of the evergreen, native trees such as Eucalypts, have been removed from the Boroondara and Stonnington area. These trees were replaced with deciduous trees, such as Planes, Oaks, Maples and Ornamental Pears. The proliferation of deciduous trees has caused the problem on two fronts. Firstly, and most importantly, removing most of the native trees has reduced the habitat of the possum’s only natural predator, the owl. With less owls, the possums have bred like rabbits and the population has exploded. To paraphrase Bill Mollison and his slug/duck paradox, “We don’t have a possum problem, we have an owl deficiency”.

Excessive development of the area, has removed the number of trees habitable by owls. At the same time, increasing the size of roof spaces and other nooks and crannies in buildings, have provided perfect nest sites, for many more possums than would traditionally occupy this area. Deciduous trees cause another problem, in providing seasonal variation of food for possums. In spring, the trees burst out of their dormancy with a mass of new growth and blossom.

How to control possums in Melbourne
Roof spaces and other nooks and crannies in buildings, have provided perfect nest sites, for many more possums.

 This new growth is tender, tasty and very nutritious to the possums. The abundance of new food supports a larger number of possums per area, than the native Eucalypts. The food supply continues into summer, with all of our tasty fruit crops, that the possums happily devour, seemingly, the day before we are about to pick our crops. All of this food allows possums to breed up and occupy smaller and smaller territorial spaces. Suddenly, in autumn, the deciduous trees drop their leaves, and the last 6 months of abundant possum food disappears almost overnight. In autumn and winter we have the problem with too many possums, and not enough food! So the hungry possums begin to explore areas that they haven’t previously. They come down from the trees, in search of those tasty winter veggie seedlings you’ve put in. Passionfruit vines, camellias and any other tender evergreen trees become winter staples for them. Often these evergreen trees succumb to overgrazing by possums in late winter and never recover.

Possum Territorial Behavior

Possums are very territorial creatures. They actively defend their territory from other intruding possums. Understanding this can help to avoid some frustration.

If you trap possums (remember trapping possums IS ILLEGAL), then DO NOT release them at a local park or reserve. Doing so releases the possum into a hostile territory that is already occupied by other possums. The established possums will harass the new “intruder” which usually results in a slow, stressful and cruel death. If you are going to trap possums, then please have the decency to dispatch them quickly and humanely yourself.

By trapping and removing a possum from your property (either by relocating or destroying it) you are creating a territorial vacuum. This vacuum will just reduce the pressure on the population and allow another possum to quickly take its place. It’s a futile task, and only encourages the possums to breed more. I have had several clients proudly tell me that they have trapped up to 100 possums per year. What a waste of time and energy!

Give up on trapping them. You’re not going to make the least bit of difference to the population. Accept the fact that they are here to stay. It’s time to live and work with possums.

Are you planting a lifetime of frustration?

With possums here to stay, it’s worth planning and planting your garden so that you work with them.

To start with, avoid planting deciduous trees in your garden that possums love to eat, but only provide seasonal food. Maples and Silver Birch are two, that possums love to eat and don’t handle their persistent grazing so well. If you really want to grow an ornamental, deciduous tree, try a Manchurian pear or an Oak. Possums love them, but their strong growth seems to support being grazed far more readily, than other varieties. Better still, plant some indigenous Eucalypts and
other trees to try and help restore the owl/possum balance.

Don’t plant lots of tasty produce and make it available to tempt hungry possums. Grow food that they don’t like to eat, or when they are not as hungry (spring and summer). Or if you must grow food that they also like to eat, then you need to come up with strategies to protect your food.

Good garden design can reduce the impact possums have on your trees. For example including paths in strategic locations can limit their access to fruit trees.

Clever use of paths in the garden

Fences are possum highways. Often hedges and trees planted up against a fence are never allowed to grow higher than the fence itself. This is because the possums keep travelling along the fence and snacking on the plants as they wander past.

We have had great success with adding a path between the fence and trees. You need a minimum gap of one metre (ideally more) between the tree canopy and the fence. A path along the gap enables you to tend your fruit trees and pick the fruit. Possums don’t like to come down to ground level, as they are at risk of predation So, usually they won’t access your fruit trees if they must climb down and cross the path.

Edible Forest Garden designed around possums

Incorporating such a path into smaller gardens can be difficult and this might reduce the overall number of trees. However, at least you will hopefully obtain good productivity from those fewer trees that you plant.

Is it really possums doing the damage?

Quite often possums are getting the blame for damage actually caused by rats. Possums don’t usually like citrus leaves or their fruit. Often lemons and other citrus fruit are found with the rind entirely eaten off the fruit, leaving the segmented pith hanging from the tree. This isn’t possums, but rats. Often if you inspect the trunk or main branches of the citrus tree, you’ll see that the rats have also been chewing the bark.

If you’re noticing that only the fruit of your crop is being eaten and the foliage is intact, that’s also probably rats. I’ve seen rats cause a large amount of damage to chillies, broad beans, tomatoes and sweet corn. I’ve seen where they have eaten carrots, leaving a perfect carrot-shaped hole in the ground. I’ve also had rats eat the small broccoli and cauliflower heads as they start to form, and left the rest of the now useless plants.

How to control possums in Melbourne
Often possums get the blame for damage actually caused by rats

Before blaming possums and starting World War Three with them, it might be a good idea to try some rat control methods first.

Still convinced you need to do something about the possums? Read on!

Methods for protecting plants and crops from Possums

I’ve tried many methods of protecting my crops from possums. I’ve had mixed success from all of them. What works for one space, doesn’t necessarily work for somewhere else. Usually a combination of some of the methods below works best. To be honest though, if a possum is hungry, there’s not much you can do to stop them.

The most important thing when controlling possums is to avoid them forming damaging feeding habits in the first place. If a possum is used to feeding on your delicious roses or veggies every night then it’s more trouble stopping them, than if they never knew the roses and veggies existed in the first place. Of course, it’s not always possible, but prevention is better than a cure!

Netting and other enclosures

If it’s done well, this can be a great way to prevent possums from damaging your crops. There are two ways to do this

Temporary netting can be draped over fruit trees or hung on temporary framework, made out of star pickets, timber or poly pipe. Just make sure you remove the netting prior to the leaves falling off. Otherwise, it becomes nearly impossible to remove the net, without damaging the tree. Temporary netting is more applicable for keeping birds off trees, than possums.

Permanent netted enclosures are a much better idea. There are many ways to do, this depending on the size of the area. Just remember that possums are great at finding entry through even the smallest of holes. Netted enclosures can also double as a chook or duck run! We have installed many netted enclosures across Victoria. See our dedicated netted enclosure page for more information about them

If you’re going to rely on netting your fruit trees or using enclosures, make sure you plant dwarf varieties. This means the trees will stay fairly small and netting will be a manageable task.

Possum alarms

There are now many variations of possum alarms on the market. We’ve trialed a few and have had mixed success. The only consistency between them, is that all of the alarms come from suppliers, that claim they are the panacea for all possum problems!

Most of the alarms are motion activated and will play a sequence of noises (often high pitched and inaudible to the human ear). Some of them also have flashing strobe lights. Some are battery operated, some are mains powered and some are both.

How to control possums n Melbourne
Motion activated possum alarms can be effective in many situations. They also seem to be effective against rats.

They can be a great solution for protecting a small area. They are non-invasive, inconspicuous and more subtle, than some of the other control methods listed here.

If you own dogs, then please take their needs into consideration when installing these alarms. We’ve found that some dogs are undisturbed by the high pitched noise, but others are quite upset by it.

Electric Fences

I haven’t tried these myself, but I recently came across a product called “Pingg-String“. It was being used by a fellow gardener in Northcote and they have had tremendous success with it. It’s not the cheapest solution, or easiest to install, but certainly worth considering. There’s also a solar powered option. Install them along your fence perimeter and keep the possums out for good!

Garlic and Chilli Sprays

There’s a lot of “natural” or “organic” deterrent sprays available commercially. You can also make them yourself. It’s a lot of effort to remember to spray your plants regularly with a garlic and/or chilli concoction. Water from rain or the hose washes it off. I’ve seen entire chilli plants destroyed by possums – chillies and all so I’m not sure why the sprays are going to be effective. It does apparently work for some gardeners, but I’m definitely not convinced on this method.

Blood and Bone

I stumbled across this method several years ago. It works very well for short periods of time. Blood and Bone is essentially ground up dead farm animals. So to possums it smells a lot like death and best avoided. You can scatter the blood and bone about the yard for a very short term solution.

An even better way to use blood and bone is to stuff a handful into an old sock, stocking or piece of fabric. Tie it up in your fruit trees, or wherever you want to deter possums. Simply give the ball a squeeze every week or so to release the aroma. I’ve heard of gardeners using balls of dog hair to deter possums with similar results.

Feeding Possums

I know, I know, it sounds counterproductive and you have busy lives and possums are pests, etc. etc etc. Personally, I haven’t bothered feeding the local possums, but it makes sense. They are territorial creatures. By feeding a few resident possums you’ll keep them from getting hungry and eating your produce. In return the well-fed possums will maintain their territory for you and keep any of their furry intruding competitors at bay. Just leave your fruit and vegetable scraps in the same place every night and let them do the rest. If you really want to keep your resident possums happy – provide a nest box for them too!

This would be a great way for young children to appreciate nature and share some responsibility for feeding them.

CDs and other shiny things

A few people swear by hanging old CDs or shiny metallic tape around the garden. I wouldn’t rely on this method alone as possums and birds quickly get used to it. It’s also a great way to instantly turn your beautiful, aesthetic garden into a tacky mess.

How to stop possums in Melbourne
Nothing says "tacky eyesore" more than CDs strung up around the garden. They don't seem to work for more than a day or so either.

Stuffed Toys

Old stuffed toys with big beady eyes are great for scaring possums. Much cheaper than those owl, or cat shaped silhouettes from the hardware chains and just as (in)effective. The key to using old toys with big beady eyes, is to move them around every night. Like most of these deterrents, if you don’t move them around, the possums soon work out that its nothing to fear and ignore them.

Garden Lights

There are two types of garden lights to consider for possum control. Motion activated lights work on a similar principle to the possum alarms above. The possum wanders in front of the light and the light comes on. The possum then gets scared and moves on. You can buy cheap solar powered versions from the large hardware chains.

I’ve had great success with flashing fairy lights. You can buy cheap solar powered versions. Avoid sets that are predictable and just flash on and off constantly. You want the sets that will cycle through a series of different flashing patterns. Hang them in the trees that you want to protect and it seems to keep the possums well away.


Dogs can be a good way to keep possums from the garden. They can be a pain, if they constantly bark at the possums and the possums just stare back at them, from the fence. The right dog can be an effective possum controller. I’ve noticed some of my clients have erected new pool fences, that have restricted the dog’s access of the whole yard. This has resulted in possums attacking the veggie patch where they hadn’t previously done so.

Restricting access

Possums don’t like to wander across open ground. In fact they don’t like to come down to ground level at all. Quite often you can limit their access to certain spaces, by removing a single tree branch, or cutting vegetation back from the fence line. This will only work in a small number of cases, but can be very effective.

Things that don’t work to deter possums:

Don’t waste your time or money on the following:

  • Spikes for putting along fences. Fences are better known as possum highways. The idea is that you’ll limit their access. Possums happily climb over roses and other prickly plants. They are not the least bit disturbed by the plastic spikes.
  • Cat and owl silhouettes: only work for a very short time and need to be moved regularly. Save your money and use an old stuffed toy with big beady eyes instead.
  • Possum traps: it’s a futile activity!
How to control possums in Melbourne
Gimmicks such as these cat silhouette's are only effective if you continuously move them to different parts of the yard.

Got your own method for keeping possums from eating plants?

If so, please let us know in the comments section. We’d all be most grateful!


Want to know more about garden pests?

The idea of a relaxed approach to pest control will appeal to many of you. We have put together a three part blog post series on pests, predators and effective control methods.


If you would like further information on garden pests, then please sign up to our Science of Edible Gardening Workshop Series. The April workshop (repeated annually) in the series focuses heavily on population dynamics and controlling garden pests.


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119 thoughts on “How to Control Possums in Melbourne

      • Amelia Robertson-Cuninghame

        Hi there,

        I have an apricot tree in my yard, for which the local possum has taken quite a shining too. In about February, the possum ate all the leaves off the tree, which then made the tree start to bud & flower again, I’m presuming because it thought it was spring. Each time the tree tries to grow some leaves, the possum eats them straight away. I have noticed that the tree hasn’t tried to regrow for about two months now, and a lot of the thin branches just snap off in my hand when bent. Indicating that they’re dead. I’m wondering if I were to give the tree a hefty prune, if that would give it a second lease. I haven’t seen the possum in ages (as there’s nothing left to munch) and would really love to save this tree.


        • Leaf, Root & Fruit Post author

          Hi Amelia,

          It probably wouldn’t hurt to cut the tree back. It sounds like it may be on its last legs anyway. Apricot trees are not very resilient compared with other fruit trees, but hopefully you can save it.

          Good Luck!


      • Paulina

        Possums ate all the flower buds of my Felix Magnolia, the tree is in the middle of the lawn away from fences and tall trees. So those possums must have been walking on the ground approaching the tree. I am planting a ring of trailing rosemary and lavender plants around my magnolia tree this spring. Do you think this might deter them from approaching and eating my magnolia?

        • Leaf, Root & Fruit Post author

          Hi Paulina, they must have been hungry possums, but it is entirely possible that they are to blame. Otherwise, birds such a rainbow lorikeets or crimson rosellas may have been the culprits. Did you observe possums causing the damage? The rosemary and lavender plants may help, but in my experience only netting stops a hungry, determined possum! Allowing a small dog to patrol the yard may also help.

          Good Luck & Happy Gardening!

  • Michael Staindl

    Great article thnak you so much. My wife read recently that Vicks Vapour Rub was a great deterrent. They’re supposed to hate it. Presumably/hopefully also washes off a little less easily than the garlic/pepper spray-on solutions? Haven’t yet tried it for myself though.

    • Leaf, Root & Fruit Post author

      Hi Micahael, yes I have used this method before. I smeared it along a fence (aka possum highway). It didn’t seem to make any difference whatsoever. I’d be interested to hear if others have had a positive result from it though?

    • Rosalie

      I have used Vicks and Vaseline to keep possums off a climbing rose. I had to keep applying it as it seemed to wash off. It stopped them eating the roses but was not a deterrent on the pathway to get there. I tried putting it around the carport to stop them going there but no avail. Full solid fencing works. Floppy fences can work. Pinng strings work if you make sure they are maintained. Fairy lights don’t work. I think the possums eat my lemon tree not rats because the damage happens every time a possum gets in whereas a rat could go any time. They eat the peel off the fruit. They eat the new leaves that stick through the fence. Water squirts work till they get used to them.

    • Sue Robins

      Vicks vapor rub works a treat!!!! Particularly effective if you know a possum/s are entering your property via a fence. Place along the top and it will definitely deter them especially in the Summer when the heat seems to make the vapor rub more aromatic. However, it is supposedly the dislike of getting the vapor rub on their feet that stops them using the tops of fences as highways to your garden. You do have to replace frequently but for me, it’s worth it.

  • Kathryn

    We have a couple of possums living near us, one I recognize as she appeared one year with her tail bitten off – a raw wound showing. It was horrible, I thought she would die. However there she is with baby on her back tail healed and still eating all our apricots. After trying everything I now just protect with nets and wire the fruit and veges I have to have- the garden at times looks like a prison camp for plants. I once planted rhubarb, thinking they won’t eat this, but they loved it! All the leaves were eaten, they left me the stalks. I think they used the chilli paste I spread over a branch as a condiment. Good luck with co existence with possums.

    • Leaf, Root & Fruit Post author

      Possums are a pretty resilient species! Chilli plants seem to be one of possums’ favourite plants to demolish, so I don’t think that chilli paste or sprays will ever work against them. Thanks for sharing your possum experience with us Kathryn.

  • Brian Hamilton

    Similar to blood and bone in old socks I put Dynamic Lifter in my old socks and cut up stockings. Possums hate the smell but rats are not detetered. Contrary to what is mentioned here trapping them has made a significant difference to the number of Possums in my garden. They nearly killed my 80 year old Liquid Amber now its thriving after 3 years of trapping. Well worth the effort.

  • Lachlan Hughes

    Fantastic article. So many practical tips and analysis of the various options. In relation to the spikes I agree that the small plastic spikes are no match for possums. After buying and installing a set I noticed a possum back in our liquid amber. I monitored the possum until it came out of the tree and witnessed it walking on top of the fence spikes as if they were not there. I rang the manufacturer and they agreed the small plastic spikes are not suited to possums and are better for stopping the human variety of intruder. However, they now have a new product which are specifically for possums, they are spikes that are clear and each spike is about 150mm high and closely spaced. These appear to be working extremely well (so far). The reason they work appears to be the fact that the spikes are too thin and talk to walk on top of and the possum cannot walk around them. The website – they are thorny devil brand. They are not stocked at all hardware stores but the site has a stockist list. I am not affiliated with the company or website.
    Obviously you have to make sure any other access areas are eliminated and other methods might be needed – eg tree trunk collars etc….

    • Leaf, Root & Fruit Post author

      Hi Lachlan,
      I’m glad to hear you’ve had success with those spikes. We’ve also tried the really long spikes and they didn’t work for us, the ringtail possums just went straight over them. Maybe they keep brushtails at bay though? Thanks or sharing!
      Good luck and Happy Gardening!

  • Joanne

    The possums in my back yard devoured a mature Sugar Gum (35+ years old), over 3 seasons it was dead. A wattle tree I planted 8 years ago gets stripped of flowers and leaves for the top 2/3 as well. We have had other losses over the 10 years we have been in this property in Boroondara, but they were exotic plants (Japanese Maple, haven’t seen flowers on our deciduous magnolia for 5 years now). Our experience its that the possums do adapt and change their diet to suit what’s available, so it doesn’t matter what you plant unless it’s Oleander! Native or not, no vegetation will support a population explosion like we have been experiencing. Agree, they have no predators like in 1975 when the Act was brought in to protect them, so lets fix it, otherwise we will also lose our botanical diversity and hence diversity of birds and bees and other insects as well.

  • Kate

    Thanks for a great article. I’ve just started researching options to deter possums from my garden. We are on 3/4 acre in Qld surround by other acreages. Normally I like possums, and I’m happy for them to stay in the big gum trees on our property. But not happy they are eating my seedlings and passionfruit vine. I’ve recently setup a big raised veggie bed area (possums haven’t found that yet) and have a large number of fruit trees recently planted. The passionfruit are growing up a fence so the possum can just walk along and have a midnight snack. They also ate the tops off some pumpkin seedlings, I covered them with chicken wire and they are recovering nicely. But the wire will have to come off soon once they vines start growing through. I don’t think it’s practical for me to permanently cover fruit trees, veggies, passionfruit vines and the like from the possums.

    So I’m looking at what other options there are. Came across the “Pingg String” and thought that could be a good option or something like it for along the fence. Even possibly around the orchard.

    Haven’t found many positive reviews whether the sonic devices actually work, we also have a dog, so think that could bother her.

    Wondered about motion sensing lights, did you have any success with them? or just the fairy lights?

    Have you had any experience with the motion activated sprinklers that squirt a burst of water in the direction of the movement to scare off pests?

    Open to any suggestions.

    • Leaf, Root & Fruit Post author

      Hi Kate,

      I haven’t trialed motion sensing lights or motion sensing sprinklers. Perhaps some of our other gardeners out there can give you some feedback? If you do give them a try, please give us all an update!

      Good Luck and Happy Gardening!


      • Judy

        Great article. We live in an inner city suburb in Melbourne.

        This year has been the worst on record for possums. Previously we would get one possum on and off over the past 20 years, but this year we have 4 possums decimating everything. I tried Canola Oil Spray with limited success. The first time I probably sprayed it too thickly, but they never came near the sprayed plants again until the plants started re-shooting and the new shoots were unprotected. It’s not something I feel like spraying my plants too often with, but it seems to slow their interest.

        Unfortunately, after being possum free for about 5 years, I replanted a number of espaliered fruit trees last year, which have now been decimated. I used to let the odd possum and birds eat the fruit at the top, and then they would move on once the fruit was gone, which has never been a problem until this year.

        The Strayban Possum Deterrent does NOT work. Installed 5m of solar fairy lights along the fence only to come out and find the possum sitting in the middle. They don’t seem to be bright enough to annoy or deter the possums interest. I used battery LED fairy lights and wrapped them around a ballerina apple tree, which are a bit brighter and seem to keep them off for now.

        There seems to be a slight delay with battery sensor lights. I installed a light at the end of a 5m fence to catch anything walking towards it – only to came out one night to find the possum sitting next to the light blocking the sensor. I observed it moved quite swiftly along this section of fence and propped in front of the sensor before it could be triggered. They are fast. I have read about some sensors being both motion and heat sensing to improve their reliability especially when being used for this purpose (at night), but if there is a programmed delay in triggering the light, this weakness will be exploited.

        Squirting with a hand sprayer is the only thing that seems to work, the downside is being sleep deprived having to check every hour to chase them out again, or they have been and gone between rounds. However, there are have been a couple of instances where the possum will just turn its back towards me, so I have had to be a bit more persuasive to move it on, so I am not sure whether one of the motion activated sprayers will remain effective once the possums realise it can be ignored as a viable threat.

        Your article raises some valid points regarding the choices councils make regarding their parks & gardens and street plantings. The recent removal of a significant number of trees along Hoddle St may account for the significant increase in possum numbers in the area this year. I have never in 20 years had 3 possums plus Big Red’s brother feeding in my garden (ie 4m x 5m) at any one time. Might be a good opportunity to apply for a rate decrease to cover the cost of a Pingg Fencing system.

        • Leaf, Root & Fruit Post author

          Hi Judy,

          Thanks for sharing your experiences with us. It sounds like you’re having a frustrating time.

          Please keep us all updated if you find something that works for you.


        • Wendy

          In same frustrating situation in Malvern East. In recent years possums have killed, 60 year old crepe myrtle, established and prolific apricot tree, now are decimating two ancient and very large apple trees and two Japanese maples.
          I have tried: Xmas tinsel, cds, old toys, moth balls in stockings, a guaranteed high pitched noise possum deterrent, various sprays, dynamic lifter in socks, and spray container of fish fertiliser – spray wasn’t strong enough to reach higher branches and l had more drift cover me – smell on my skin was not pleasant and my complexion was enhanced either.
          The only solution that lasts for more than a few days in fairy lights that sequence through flashing and other modes. However the tree/S need to be draped like Xmas trees and swing in the breeze.
          Sadly even with hundreds of dollars of these solar lights in my apple and maple trees the possums are there with avengence. I put on bright spotlights to see families of four or more in different sections of each tree. Only putting a hose on strong jet of water moves them on – they learn very quickly where Jet cannot reach them, they wait until l return to bed and return most nights.
          Can we petition epa / councils / state government for change of protection laws as Joanne above said “Agree, they have no predators like in 1975 when the Act was brought in to protect them, so lets fix it, otherwise we will also lose our botanical diversity and hence diversity of birds and bees and other insects as well.”

          • Wendy

            Forgot to add, had a possum box, and did feed them fruit and veg and prunings – not too much, but it just encouraged breeding and more possum parties. : (

          • Leaf, Root & Fruit Post author

            Thanks for sharing your experience Wendy. It sounds like you’re having quite a frustrating time. Best of luck with your petition. Feel free to share a link to it in this comments section for others to sign.

  • Christine O'Riley

    I use Lapsang Sousang Tea as a spray, works well but you have to spray again after rain. I now feed my possums, I find it stops them eating my plants. They like apples and bananas best, I just buy cheap ones, still cheaper than replacing all the plants they eat. I don’t have names for them yet but the babies are really sweet and some of them eat from my hand and let me pat them.

    • Leaf, Root & Fruit Post author

      Sounds like you’re really learning to live with the possums Christine! Thanks for sharing your experiences with us.

      Good Luck and Happy Gardening!

  • Michael

    I politely stared the resident possum in the eyes and told him that if he eats any of my food, then I’ll eat him (wouldn’t really, but he doesn’t need to know that). Haven’t seen him since.

    Also placed a heap of kebab skewers in the garden (pointy side down) about 1 inch or so apart, dotting it everywhere to ensure that any possum (or cat) which entered would have a very uncomfortable time.

    • Leaf, Root & Fruit Post author

      Ha! Great one Michael. Glad that it’s worked out for you.

      Thanks for the tip about the kebab skewers.

      Good Luck and Happy Gardening!


  • edward

    Arlec Laser projector purchased at Bunnings for $79.99. At night pointed into a half dead Liquid Amber and turned on the red/green star burst mode. The tree becomes covered with pulsating laser light. Possums can’t eat what they can’t see. The only downside is it has a max 6-hour timer so have to get up and reset. Seems to be working, no possums in the tree during laser show and tree growing new buds.

    • Leaf, Root & Fruit Post author

      Sounds interesting -although the idea of having to reset every 6 hours seems a bit tedious! Thanks for sharing Edward. Good luck with it all!

  • Conrad

    I just brought an avacado tree to plant, but before I could choose a spot, a possum dragged it off my deck last night and ate most of the leaves and chewed off half of the bark. I think I’ll be betting that one with the rest of my veggie patches 🙁

    • Leaf, Root & Fruit Post author

      Ahhhh!!!! What a pain Conrad. Good luck with keeping them out of the veggies this summer. Hopefully some of our tips will work for you.

      • Bel

        We have a 20 year old as a avocado tree in the heart of an inner city melb suburb, and a 2 year old. The possums (ring tail) have this year started to come in droves, deficating everywhere and eating the tree. Reading this, and being we’ve tried many other options, is leaving us with the last resort of removing the tree, unless we can find a solution?!?

        • Leaf, Root & Fruit Post author

          Hi Bel,

          not much can stop a hungry possum and it will probably continue to feed on the tree over the years. Why does the tree need to be removed though? Surely the tree still has benefits in the form of shade? You’ll possibly find that the damage is seasonal and when other food sources are available they may head elsewhere. Hopefully you can find a less drastic solution than tree removal. If you do remove the tree, then please consider planting something in its place.

          Happy Gardening!

        • Linda

          Thankyou for your very informative and common sense article.
          I too have tried many strategies to protect certain plants& trees in my garden. I don’t mind if they eat some plants.
          One thing you didn’t mention is snakes. I read where they avoid them. I used any thing that resembled a snake . It did seem to have some effect.

          • Leaf, Root & Fruit Post author

            Hi Linda,

            Thanks for the feedback and the great tip about toy snakes.

            Happy gardening


  • Maya

    Moth balls in a stocking hung from trees or in the vegetable garden seem to keep the possums at bay. Lasts longer than cloudy ammonia or vapour rub. Moth balls are available cheaply at $2 shops. Good luck!

      • Alan Jennings

        we tried mothballs in pouches hanging in our Magnolia Doltsopa because each year the possums decimate all the new foliage and buds and actually break branches down as they clamber around them, didn’t work 🙁
        we also tried putting slit PVC piping around a Melia tree again without success they just jumped across from the fence, they have decimated the tree this year and chewed bark off the higher branches last year effectively killing those branches too .
        Have just sprinkled blood and bone around the whole garden and left it on the surface to try and stop them decimating the deciduous magnolias, thought it had worked but came out today and found lots of chewed buds 🙁
        We netted the persimmon tree this year, haven’t needed to before, but they still got inside because the currawongs pecked through the net to get to the remaining fruit…..
        at wits end now, between the possums and deer we haven’t got much left in our garden, its getting exceedingly frustrating….We have just sprinkled deodorant soap flakes (American idea and soap!) around and hung bits on the rural fencing to deter deer, at the same time as the blood and bone spread, fingers crossed but not confident!

        • Leaf, Root & Fruit Post author

          Sounds like you’ve had a frustrating time of it Alan.

          Please let us all know if you do find something in particular that works for you.

          Good Luck & Happy Gardening!


          • Alan Jennings

            we have put corrugated iron around the trunks of the Melias and removed the low branches and branches going across to other trees and shrubs, also done this to the persimmon and walnut tree and so far so good, been like that about 6 months but of course winter hunger will tell! Unfortunately we cant stop them decimating the other magnolias etc because the branches are low and intermingled, however, we do spotlight them each night when going to bed and spray them with the hose if we see them – however, we have noted now that they don’t come there until after we have gone to bed!
            Netting works for a while until they find a way in, even by chewing it if necessary, but they only seem to do that if getting desperate (and they do get desperate!)
            Incidentally, we enjoy your monthly newsletter Duncan, its great, our local community seems to enjoy it too 🙂

        • paul neri

          I made a very concentrated garlic brew and sprayed it over my ripening passionfruit every evening and it seemed to keep the possum (x1) and Cockatoos (x 100,000) off them but it might have just been good luck as I’ve read nothing keeps a hungry possum at bay. Proof will be in the pudding next season.

  • Lauren

    Thanks for all this great info. Is there a list of plants possums are unlikely to eat? I’m on a rural block and feeding one dominant possum with compost from the kitchen, but I’d like to establish some shrubs and ornamental flowers around the house to improve the landscaping. My vegie garden is completely enclosed.

    • Leaf, Root & Fruit Post author

      Hi Lauren,
      Possums are fickle creatures and what seems less popular to possums in some gardens are a treat for possums in other areas. In the veggie patch, we’ve found nasturtiums, tomatoes and pumpkins are left alone by possums. Native/Indigenous trees and shrubs tend to fare pretty well also – or at least handle the grazing by possums much better than introduced species.

      It might be a case of trial and error for you. Please let us all know how you get on!

      Good Luck and Happy Gardening


      • Michelle

        They love our tomatoes! They wait till they are just about ripe – nice and red, then pluck them from the plant. We put up chicken wire around the tomato plants, but they reach in and grab them. I will apply some blood and bone, and see how that goes.
        I have just about given up on growing any more vegies – especially after they stripped my parsley and corriander plant!
        I noticed they are not interested in the cucumber (as of yet).

        • Leaf, Root & Fruit Post author

          Hi Michelle,

          How frustrating. It may also be rats eating your tomatoes. In the past we’ve had problems with rats stealing clients’ tomatoes. It would definitely be possums eating the parsley and coriander. In one of our clients gardens I’ve noticed that they really love flat-leaf (Italian) parsley, but don’t generally touch the curly leaf. So it might be worth trialing a few different varieties to see if they leave any of them alone.

          Good Luck!


          • Alan Jennings

            yep, rats love tomatoes, they also took our first lemon on our new lemon tree!
            we struggled with rats a lot in prior years when next door kept chickens, but since they have gone its not sooo bad, still need to be vigilant, they still got the tomatoes in the fenced vege patch even with bird mesh over them…its definitely possums going berserk this year (and deer!)

          • Leaf, Root & Fruit Post author

            Very frustrating Alan!

            Hopefully you still get a fair share of your crops.

  • Christine O'Riley

    My possums used to eat my pansies down to the stem now they leave them alone, used to eat my strawberries now don’t. I find there are certain flowers they don’t like, alllysum, snap dragons, sweet peas, geums are some. Yesterday I bought some petunias to plant today, this morning not a flower in sight, little buggars. I grown species geraniums and they love them as well, they don’t like poppies either, as for trees and shrubs I dont have a problem. Why won’t they just eat the weeds? I do feed them nearly every night though as I heard that if you feed them they won’t eat your garden. I feel like a zoo keeper preparing their food every night.

    • Leaf, Root & Fruit Post author

      Just like people, different possums have different preferences. It would be great if we could all have possums that only eat the weeds! Thanks for sharing your experiences Christine.

      Good Luck and Happy Gardening!

  • Robyn

    I grow organic apples that I have espaliered in a small side garden. Each spring, when the apples are the size of a pea, I use little ziplock bags and bag each and every apple. This results in zero disease, zero insect damage and so far, zero bird or animal attack. I guess if they can’t smell the fruit, they don’t know it is there. The bags are a bit tedious to put on, but it is a once only thing. I get the bags in bulk from Costco. They work out cheaper than spraying, netting etc.

    • Leaf, Root & Fruit Post author

      Interesting idea Robyn. I can see how these could benefit in some situations and I’m glad it is working for you. Thanks for sharing. For anyone else wanting to give this a try, I would consider cutting a corner off one of the bags to allow air to flow. Otherwise, you may run the risk of fungal diseases developing. There’s also a risk of cooking or burning the produce inside the bag if it has harsh sun directly on it. I’ve seen similar exclusion bags made out of flywire, these have the benefit of allowing air to flow around the fruit.

      If anyone else has experience with using a similar method, please let us know.


  • Bren

    I have too many possums in my backyard. Some camelias come into bud then theyre eaten I have never had fruit off any of my trees except for the apples. My veg garden is totally enclosed with netting, nothing gets in. Have a huge oak tree that the possums eat all the acorns at night. So one day I dropped a packet of ratsak under the oak tree. Next day it was all eaten, at that stage i didnt know if it was rats or possums that ate it. The next day two dead possums. Very happy it worked. Now to get rid of the many that lurk around this area. possums haver to be culled, fed up with the noise and destruction they cause

    • Leaf, Root & Fruit Post author

      Thanks for sharing your experience and thoughts on the matter Bren. However, we do not condone the use of ratsack or other poisons to control possums. Poisoning of native wildlife is illegal in Victoria.

      Best of luck with finding a balanced way to live and work with nature. Happy Gardening!


      • Anders Burden

        We encased our veggie garden and put tree netting all around, but before we finished putting the netting around the 2nd patch overnight the possums had eaten most of the bean seedlings. Our best choice after reading everyone’s contributions (and yes shame on the rat sack poisoner) is to encase with fine chicken wire mesh. I’m so glad we found this site before our future crops were decimated.

  • paul neri

    Strategy 6 – I’m experimenting with tying sausage balloons to my silk tree – the idea being the wretched thing digs its claws into the balloon – bang! – possum gets a fright and runs for miles and never comes back but I’m not sure if I haven’t taken leave of my senses. This possum problem gnaws at me day and,of course, night but I’m determined to win!

  • Glenyse Webster

    Last night a gang of possums ripped three big holes in the new netting cage over the fig tree. They ate about two dozen plump, almost ripe fruit; everything on the tree. I hope they’ve all got belly aches today!

    • paul neri

      Wow that is a damaging hit! Stay calm, I know what you’re going through. Coincidentally I had a hit on one of my silk trees last night. Under cover of rain, Big Red, as I call the fat,waddling monster, launched an attack and I didn’t hear him due to the rain. I kid you not, I sleep in a beach tent in the carport so I can protect my tree from Big Red. He (or she) runs past me every second or third night, jumps from a ledge onto the clothes line, stands on two legs and extends his body for a chomp. I blast him with my water cannon and he keeps on chomping for a while then tries to find a different route to the tree. In fact one night he climbed down and took a drink out of a water-filled bowl – the arrogance! Someone said somewhere that nothing stops a hungry possum and I think that’s right. Keep up the good and noble battle and one day … your neighbour might grow figs or something just as appetising !

  • Karin Anderson

    I’ve read that WD40 sprayed on to the top of the fence works. Maybe it works on tree trunks as well. It said WD40 is fish based so may not harm plants. Have purchased a supply – waiting for the drizzle to stop. Will report back.

    • Leaf, Root & Fruit Post author

      Thanks for sharing your insight Karin. I’m pretty sure that WD40 is petroleum based and residues are likely to remain in the soil for a long time. So please use it carefully around the garden.

      If you do give it a go, please do report back!

      Good Luck and Happy Gardening!


    • paul neri

      Applying hair spray to leaves, particularly new growth, seems to work (only practicable on small bushes). The possible presence of the buruli ulcer in possums means we should be careful about coming into contact with possum poo.

  • Leeayn Jones

    Have tried everything possums almost destroyed all my flowering plum have humanly relocated several but after about 6 weeks more have appeared any suggestions Leeayn Jones

    • Leaf, Root & Fruit Post author

      Hi Leeayn,

      I don’t believe that there is such a thing as humane relocation. This is because possums are very territorial. Releasing possums into new territory condemns them to harassment by other possums and likely a slow and painful death. Far better to either plant more resilient trees (such as natives) or find other ways to live with them (such as some of the methods mentioned in the blog post or comments section).

      Good Luck and Happy Gardening!


  • Peter Nelson

    I have a different problem, My House is on ONLY Rain Water, and the Possums are Pooing on the Roof
    which goes into my Rain water tank,.. also I had a hell of a Problem getting the Possum out of my Ceiling
    Space, I ended up putting a Infrared Rotatable (360 degrees) Camera in the Ceiling to work out where it was getting in,.
    was getting in,. I fixed that with over 200 Screws & 2 rolls of Chicken Wire over the multiple places it was getting in.
    That was over a year ago, and the Possum is still trying to reclaim the Ceiling space.
    I have found it uses the white down pipes & the TV antenna Pole that goes down to ground level to get on the Roof
    including any of that Black Plastic Water piping (1″).

    This is what works very very well for me, I use the Smelliest Car Grease I can find, which is Molybdenem Disulfide
    Grease, it has Sulfur in it & is very thick,.. Lasts about 1 year in the Weather,.. why this works is the Possums dont like
    getting it on their Fur, because, when they go to lick it off it tastes really bad, & they dont have access to Soap and water
    to get it off.
    They also wont stand on it,. I have the Grease on some Roof parts, Down Pipes & places they try to scratch at.
    I have those stainless steel wire spicks all over the place, I should of saved my Money, & went with the grease.

  • Carmel

    My Dear Friend.. Possums LOOOVE Citrus fruit..A possum decimated my usually Abundant Imperial Mandarin fruit..and when thet was finished he / she turned onto the oranges and the honey murcot mandarin , my zucchinis and my Geraldton Wax native plants. The electronic device I set up infront of the Mandarin tree is Hopeless. There was the Possum happily devouring a mandarin while the Device was Flashing a strong beam of light and supposedly an audible sound to scare possums. COUNCILS whom we pay big money need to plant large gum trees for the possums to live we Humans are the big pest on the planet.. We cannot plant massive gum trees in our backyards,,… dangerous and impossible.


    • Leaf, Root & Fruit Post author

      Hi Carmel,

      Thanks for sharing your observations with us. It certainly can be difficult to stop a hungry possum.

      Good Luck & Happy Gardening


  • Brad

    Pinng string by sureguard. Last resort for me after trying everything. Saved my 20 year old Japanese maple from a certain death by more than 6 possums that would graze it bare every night. Had mine in for two years (solar version) works great.

      • Ana

        We got a rabbit and put the hutch outside. This attacted a fox that left droppings all over the yard. Suddenly no possum. As soon as we put the rabbit hutch inside with the hot weather, the Fox is gone and back comes the possum. It made 3 holes in the bird netting to get inside our apricot tree. I thought of leaving rotting fish outside to attract the Fox but this would probably attract mice, rats…and the possum!!!

        • Leaf, Root & Fruit Post author

          Great observations Ana. Thanks for sharing. What about getting a dog then? Not practical for everyone, but may work for some!

    • Alan Jennings

      How did you setup the Pingg String around the maple please Brad? I just cant see how this will work when possums can jump 1.5m tree/tree/shrub etc, and its not viable for us as a perimeter fence, so how does Pingg String work please??

  • Judy

    I have tried it all, Vicks Vapour Rub, moth balls, petroleum jelly, StrayBan, Poss-Off, solar lights, motion sensor lights, motion sensor squirting devices, every deterrent I could find. The most I achieved was a couple of weeks of relief. I tried planting a range of different plants which seemed to be working only to find when there was nothing else they became the next item on the menu. It wasn’t that you had found something they would not eat, it was only a matter of time before the possums developed a liking for it.

    In my research I discovered the Sureguard Pingg String Fencing. I put off installing it due to the cost and, if in the event it didn’t work, there was nothing else to give me hope of saving what little garden there was left. Well I am happy to say, it works. I installed the “fence top” option at the beginning of spring (2019) and despite a couple of breaches of the boundary (which required some minor tweaking) it works a treat – for me not the possums. Whilst the trees are starting to recover, another 12 months without a solution would’ve finished them. I thought it would look awful, but it blends in well with the greenery and is visible enough so the birds do not fly into it.

    The other bonus, I not sure whether anyone else has noticed a significant increase in pigeons over the years, but with the fence top Pinng String fence seems to discourage them also.

    • paul neri

      I am so hap…no I’m thrilled you found a solution. The worst thing people can do is feed the things because then they lose their fear of humans . I feel I came close to a nervous breakdown over my one possum problem. After what seemed a couple of years it resolved itself in an unfortunate and unintended way which resulted in the possum being removed from the premises – injured – and to the vet but I’ve had peace ever since. Not sure if the vet put the possum down or re-homed it.

    • Wendy

      Very happy for you Judy,
      I looked at the Sureguard website, ping string out of stock, and l couldn’t find information about how this product works.
      Can you please explain how you set it up and how it deters possums?

      • Judi

        Hi Wendy,
        The system works on a solar powered electrical pulse system. The resistance is similar to getting a zap from static electricity (which both my neighbour and I have tested). There are some limitations, the only access to my garden is from the fence line, which is the main reason why this works extremely well in my case. The system comprises of a 4 wires mounted along the top the fence, should the possum make contact with 2 of the wires it will receive a zap. Unfortunately, it has not deterred them from using the “highway”, bypassing my place and moving onto my neighbours gardens. I have monitored it on and off over a number of months, the possums are still investigating how they can bypass the system, which has required further tweaking from time to time to ensure the perimeter is maintained. The system also has a “night mode”, which is ideal if your neighbours have young children. I have a 10m x 4.5m backyard which cost around $450 to fence. Given the cost of the StrayBan and the cost, time and effort required for all the other remedies, it is the only one which has been effective. The 300+ online reviews for the Pinng Fence are all positive. I recommend downloading all the documentation, installation guides and user instructions from their website and contacting them to discuss whether this is suitable for your situation.

        Good luck.

      • Alan Jennings

        I agree with Wendy, I cant see how this works when possums can jump 1.5m tree/tree/shrub etc, can you please share your setup?? thanks

        • Leaf, Root & Fruit Post author

          Hi Alan and Wendy,

          you can for example run it around the perimeter of your garden on the top of your fence. It would very much depend on how your garden is set up though. Probably more suited to smaller courtyards than larger blocks with trees overhanging the fence.

          Hope that helps


        • Judy

          The adjoining properties had removed most of their trees and replaced it with bamboo (which is difficult for possums to leap from). I have now espaliered my trees along the fence line, removing the opportunity to ‘leap’ towards or into trees by removing the volume of vegetation or branches for them to ‘land’. Whenever I plant anything I ensure the Pingg fence is always positioned within the possible line of travel or ‘flight’ when leaping from any higher positions. Possums normally climb or push through barriers, or leap from a higher to a lower level. I have had to tweak the set-up every now and again, but I am definitely maintaining the upper hand. My pomegranate suffered towards the end of the last season, but I will be trimming the top of the tree before the next season to ensure the possums are unable to ‘leap’ to it. You have to remain vigilant, they will keep trying to find a way to get past the barrier.

  • Lisa Saraf


    Im hoping there is some help out there for my enquiry. I have Ornamental Pear trees trying to grow and I have noticed that Possums have been eating the tops of these trees as they walk along the fence. I am unsure what we can do to stop this I thought about steaks with chicken wire but I know possums are strong and they can find a way to eat them. If anyone can suggest anything I would be ever so grateful.. Kind Regards, Lisa

    • Leaf, Root & Fruit Post author

      Hi Lisa,

      Hopefully some of the tips in the blog and resulting comments have proven useful to you. There’s a wealth of knowledge in both to help protect your trees.

      Good Luck & Happy Gardening!

  • Ellessay

    I tried nearly all these ideas but without success. In some cases what I thought was possum destruction was actually rats. I have very small strip of garden at side and rear of my 300sqm block : it provides all of my vege needs except the larger scale crops such as corn and potatoes. It includes 7 fruit trees, 4 of them espaliered.
    Seeing adverts for people constructing “cat runs” between fence and house, I spent the dollars and had my entire strip wired in as a “cat run”. Very well made, on steel frame, and wired tight at junctions, and ground so that it is also rat proof. About 4m high so plenty of room for citrus trees to spread upwards. It has gates at each end since I need to leave the yard open during the day as a run for my dog. This has been huge success, also keeping parrots off. Money well spent, considering what I have wasted over the last few years on netting, alarms, sprays, etc. to say nothing at the loss of produce. Looks like I will finally get crop this year, apricots, plums, quinces and pomegranites. Possums still very active, partying on my roof every night, occasionally venturing across the wire (by the sounds of it!) but no chance of getting in.

  • Ross

    Thank you for your advice on dealing with possums in Melbourne’s leafy eastern suburbs. We have a garden in Glen Iris with a Maple tree and a fence lined with Machurian Pear trees…As you say, the possums love them… And to show their appreciation they leave a carpet of poo and pee every night for us to admire each morning!! We have trimmed back the trees as much as we can and removed possum nests that were in the trees. I have heard about the “Possum Alarms” and their mixed results as deterrants. We also have dogs, and I understand some of these devices may be an issue for them. In our situation, the device/s would be outdoors, covering an area of approx 50m2, including very tall trees. I would be very interested purchasing one of these devices, and would be grateful for your advice. Please contact me via email

    • Leaf, Root & Fruit Post author

      Hi Ross,

      Thanks for getting in touch. Like most of the deterrents mentioned in the blog post, possum alarms will only prevent possums from finding new food sources. In my experience, if the possum has already made a habit of feeding on a particular plant then it is very difficult to change that habit.

      Most often, dogs do not seem to be disturbed by the noise of the possum alarms.

      Good Luck & Happy Gardening


  • Patricia Taylor

    Here is an amusing anecdote: I used the ‘feeding your possums ‘ method and it worked for the whole of spring with a mum and her bub. Then 2 other massive possums moved in and very quickly started to come in the laundry via the cat flap to eat the cats food. They showed the way to the mum and bub. The neighbours were not impressed by all the possum traffic either. Anyway after waking up one night with 2 possums in the bedroom looking for food – they were completely comfortable around us by that time, my husband finally had enough . He locked the cat flap and had a tantrum for me to stop feeding them. They tried for weeks to use the cat flap and hang around the fence where i used to put the food , and my heart was very heavy , i was -am – missing the beautiful mum and baby. But i guess they cannot be pets? Anyway a new lot came in after a couple of months and i am now trying out other deterrent to try and save a beautiful old apple tree being whose bark and leaves is being eaten to destruction. And on it goes…

    • Leaf, Root & Fruit Post author

      Oh wow! The dangers of making friends with the local wildlife.

      Thanks for sharing your experience Patricia… a great warning to us all!

    • Christine O'Riley

      Hello Patricia, I feed about 12 every night so they dont eat my plants and mostly it works. Mine do not enter the house except for one night when I found one sitting on my bread bin having a sandwich!! One of my cats waits until they all come down for their mostly nightly feed then runs through them like people do to seaguls at the beach. It is so funny as he waits for them to settle down then goes through again, then the fun is over so he goes inside.
      I have had 2 apple blossoms trees completely removed of all folliage by Ringtails not the Brushys that I feed which I was cross about but its nature and there was nothing I could do. I now know what plants they wont eat so thats what I plant.
      I have been here 30 years and due to all the trees that have been cut down it has only been the last maybe 6 years that I have had them coming down. The poor little/big creatures have to live somewhere I guess.

  • Karen Brett

    I have installed a weighted drop down cover, which they just find any gap in or if the wind is string and they are dislocated they eat my plants.I have had an electric fence installed. The other night I saw a possum run along the fence top ( metal) with the electric cord between it’s legs, carefully avoiding getting shocked. I give up now. This is the third year in a row my camellias are stripped bare. I am going to cut them to hedge height and erect a higher fence so that the possums are not encouraged to climb down to eat them. If that doesn’t work, I will plant a rosemary hedge???

    • Leaf, Root & Fruit Post author

      Hi Karen, they do love camellias don’t they! Hopefully you can find a workable solution.

      Good Luck & Happy Gardening

      • Christine

        I have a dozen or so brushys come down each night which I feed so they don’t eat my garden. You have to learn to live with them I’m afraid. I have learnt what they don’t eat and most of my back yard only has those plants. My veggie beds are all enclosed. The ringtails eat different things like my apple blossom, Japanese Maple naughty possies.

  • Sue

    Dispatch them yourself’
    That is illegal.
    Relocating, hurting or killing protected native wildlife, including possums is illegal.
    You may want to edit your article asap

    • Leaf, Root & Fruit Post author

      Hi sue,

      Indeed it is all illegal. I’m pretty sure I highlight this in the article. I certainly don’t advocate for either option.

      However, the reality is that some gardeners do trap possums. I know this because they tell me. Some gardeners even proudly tell me they trap them in their hundreds! When I ask what they do with the possums, they say they choose the relocation option as they don’t have the stomach to dispatch them. Perhaps if they did have to kill them, rather than relocate them, they would think twice about trapping them. Ideally, no possums would be harmed. However for me, a quick death is more ethical than a slow, harassed death caused by relocation into another possum’s territory.

      By highlighting the realities hopefully it will get readers thinking about the bigger picture. There’s plenty of official websites out there talking about the legalities. I prefer to discuss the realities.

      Thanks for your passionate feedback.


  • ChrisX

    has anyone tried to put a small metal bell or wind chimes around the tree or fence where the possums would pass by?
    I wonder if the noise will surprise them and stop them from doing their mission.

    • Leaf, Root & Fruit Post author

      Hi Chris,

      I haven’t given it a go. It’s worth a shot though. If you do try it then please let us all know how you get on.

      Happy gardening


  • Susan Light

    I covered my plum trees this year as the trees were full of plums and I didnt want any intruders!
    Funny thing though – all the plums have disappeared. There is nothing left on the ground they have simply vanished. This hasnt happened before. Last year I got a good crop. Does anyone have any idea?? The netting is firmly around the tree and I havent located spot that looks as though something has gotten in.

    • Leaf, Root & Fruit Post author

      Hi Susan,

      My immediate thought is that it’s rats. They can wipe out an entire crop overnight. They’re also pretty good at finding the smallest of entry points (or making one).

      Better luck next year


  • Susan E Quinnell

    We installed an electrified possum fence with an overhanging floppy edge around an orchard. After 3 months a possum dug its way in under a gate. We blocked the burrowed hole. It took 8 days for a possum to find a way in. We are looking for it. We can’t thinks of any other acceptable solution. Meanwhile the orchard is being consumed

    • Leaf, Root & Fruit Post author

      Wow, that’s one determined possum. They can be difficult to stop once they find your fruit.

      Best of luck for finding a solution.


  • Jeff

    We have given up on direct possum control through human intervention. One unexpected form of control was to build a possum box and put it in an old eucalypt. The local powerful owl figured out if he/she sat on the top of the box there was an easy feed available. We then had the problem of dealing with headless and dismembered possum carcasses. Solution bury them and plant a passionfruit vine over it. Trouble is the powerful owl is itinerant – hunts over a large area but does come back. So make your possums attractive to the owls.