By Lynne Adkins

MONTGOMERY COUNTY, Pa. (CBS) — Halloween is fast approaching, so many of us are finding the perfect pumpkin to put on the front step —  only to discover it gobbled up one day later by neighborhood rodents.

You spent hours in the field, selecting the perfect pumpkin.  Then, just days later, it’s an orange mess after a pack of hungry squirrels rip it apart.

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But you can fight back!

Mia Mengucci, a Pennsylvania certified horticulturist at Primex Garden Center in Glenside, Pa., says there are sprays at your local garden center that will keep the critters away from your gourd:

“You use it as a barrier.  You spray it before you get to something you don’t want them to go after, because if you’re walking down the street and smell something repulsive you’ll tend to walk away.  So you spray it before they get to what they want to eat.”

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The sprays come in garlic, mint, and pepper aromas — all of which squirrels find repulsive.

There are also granules you can buy that when sprinkled around your great pumpkin will keep it from becoming some rodent’s lunch.

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Reported by Lynne Adkins, KYW Newsradio.
Photos by Lynne Adkins