The challenge for yardeners is to achieve a backyard balance that allows both wildlife and plants to prosper. While no one has discovered a foolproof squirrel control system (yet), there are many ways to control undesirable squirrel activity.
One strategy is to join them rather than fight them. The average gray squirrel eats about 2 pounds of food per week. If squirrels get enough food from their own sources, they will be less likely to target valued landscape plants and bird feeders. Plant with squirrels in mind. Choose trees and shrubs that produce nuts and berries favored by squirrels. Pinecones, acorns and other seeds produced by nearby trees will supply local squirrels.
Simultaneously, choose crops and plant ornamental plants that are not squirrel favorites. Plant narcissus, snowdrops and hyacinths instead of crocus. Plant less appealing apple trees rather than the favored peach or pear trees. To discourage bird feeder raids, set out bread, pinecones, corn for squirrels, and other treats for them on the ground or at a platform squirrel feeder in a remote part of the yard away from the bird feeder. Then, sit back and enjoy them.