11 ways to prevent cats from entering your flower beds
They are intelligent, curious and autonomous. This is what makes cats so attractive, but it can also become a problem. If your feline is constantly scratching in flowerpots or if your neighbor’s cat is laying landmines in your vegetable patch, their cute little eyes won’t save them this time around.
The problem is, cats are difficult to train. You can’t just threaten them with your index finger up and hope they understand. But cats have a good memory! With a few little adapted tricks, you can make these hairballs avoid certain places in the future.
1) Protective grid
To prevent cats from defecating in flower beds and the garden, it is good to know their preferences. They particularly like sheltered places with dry, crumbly soil, where they can bury their gifts in peace. So it makes sense that they see vegetable gardens as the ideal latrines. To keep them away, just cover them with a protective grid. You can also place sticks or poles on the strips between the plants. It’s way too uncomfortable for kitty.
Cats have thin noses. They do not like strong, pungent, pungent smells at all. Once you’ve identified the cat’s favorite spot, you can dramatically reduce the appeal of that spot by sprinkling (peeled) garlic, pepper, or cloves on it. Coffee grounds or freshly cut grass between vegetables will also keep unwanted visitors away and make good fertilizer. Don’t forget to put it back in after it rains. Unfortunately, this only works if the cat has not gotten used to certain scents from a young age.
3) Cat spray
This trick is the “ultimate weapon” when it comes to keeping cats away from certain flowerpots, furniture or walls. You can also keep it away from poisonous houseplants – for example, cyclamen, chrysanthemums or tulips – using a special scent spray so that it doesn’t accidentally nibble on them. Such a cat spray can be made by you and adapted to the smell of your little companion.
For variant 1, mix water with a few drops of different essential oils (such as lemon oil and lavender oil). For variant 2, mix a little apple cider vinegar with hand soap and water. For the third variation, simmer the citrus zest in water for 20 minutes; you can “season” it all with pepper and cinnamon. Try the cat spray on an inconspicuous area before spraying it on your sofa or wallpaper.
4) Protect the pots
Once a cat has chosen a flowerpot and is unresponsive to the sprays, it will be difficult to keep it away. It is in the nature of some cats to scratch the ground or imbue it with their body odor. With larger pots, you can cover the earth with a layer of pebbles. However, these stones must be heavy enough that the cat will lose the urge to scratch because if the stones are too small, he will take it as a challenge! There are also round plant protectors for flower pots; a linen bag with a drawstring, which we put around the pot can also do the trick.
5) Suggest alternatives
You don’t necessarily need to spoil the fun of your little purring tiger but just present something better to him. How about a catnip cushion hanging from the scraper? Also make sure the litter box is in good condition.
6) bark mulching
In the garden, you can often repel unwanted stray animals with bark mulch. Because, as we’ve already mentioned, cats prefer finely crumbled potting soil for their needs. The advantage of bark mulching is that it looks better than wire mesh, but it just as much protects the soil from drying out and siltation. Pine cones have the same function.
The type of plantation alone can protect you from four-legged pests. In recent years, we can find plants supposed to scare cats away. However, their effectiveness is controversial. More promising: the borders of lavender, rosemary, peppermint or lemongrass, and in addition, they smell good!
A dense hawthorn hedge already keeps unwanted guests away at the property line. Its thorns are unpleasant to cats, but not dangerous. Berberidaceae are also often used as a barrier against stray animals, but it should be remembered that Berberidaceae are toxic to cats. Although cats rarely nibble on thorny bushes, if you want peace of mind, it’s best to avoid them.
8) Water jet
Cats are afraid of water, all children know that. It is not yet clear where this aversion to water comes from, but it does not matter much because you can make good use of this fear: if your garden has become a meeting place for all the cats in the neighborhood, you can change that with a water gun. However, this implies being on the lookout regularly. Lawn sprinklers equipped with motion sensors are also commercially available, but you should install them so that the postman does not have any unpleasant surprises. Other devices work with ultrasound which, according to the manufacturers, is individually adjustable for the ears of cats, rodents or dogs.
Anyone who catches a cat in the act can scare it away by making sounds. However, it must be a loud, sudden noise. A simple cry is not enough. You can also make a rattle with a tin can and a few screws. If the cat is surprised in such an unpleasant way several times, it will soon not approach the vegetable garden or the flowerpot.
10) shiny objects
Crows and other seed predators can be repelled with glittering objects. It can be hanging CDs or aluminum tapes. Cats also react with anxiety to such effects. Unfortunately, this measure only works as a preventive measure and during the day or in lighted gardens.
11) The next step
Finally, a method that requires a certain diplomatic skill. If you know the owner of the cat, you should try to describe the problem to them and find a solution together. It often happens that cats keep their garden clean. A tidy litter box on the patio prevents the cat from using the neighbor’s garden as a toilet. But the problem arises above all for uncastrated males: they mark their territory with urine and feces to discourage competition. Perhaps we can come to an agreement with the neighbor on a castration? This measure is becoming mandatory in more and more places anyway and it is recommended in particular for animal welfare reasons, as the organization PETA emphasizes.
However, it’s not always the neighbor’s cat that leaves a smelly gift on your property. It is not uncommon for it to be droppings from hedgehogs, martens or other rodents that also inhabit the garden. If you find the droppings in the vegetable patch or even on the lawn or patio, it is usually not a cat, as they prefer to bury their creation.
If your cat finally leaves the flowerpots and sofa backrest alone with these tips, you can reward her with one of these 22 DIY Cat Ideas!