How to Keep Cats out of Plants and Vegetable Gardens

How to Keep Cats out of Plants and Vegetable Gardens

Cats mostly have a sweet and playful nature. But sometimes, they can be mischievous and may start climbing onto counters, get inside your potted plants or knock things around. Growing plants can be challenging as they might chew, use them as litter boxes, wreck their foliage or play with their leaves till they fall off. Although some of you might give up the idea of growing plants, simple measures like sprinkling cayenne pepper on the leaves or putting lemon peels inside the pot can help to keep cats out of plants.


You might look for effective ways to keep your cat out of plants naturally. You might have other questions like what smell keeps cats away from plants or which plants cats hate might also come to your mind. Some might even wonder why cats like to eat plants? Fortunately, some ways can help you deal with such instances.


Here is a complete breakdown of how to keep cats out of a vegetable garden and more!


How Do You Keep Cats Out of Plants and Vegetable Gardens Naturally?

How Do You Keep Cats Out of Plants and Vegetable Gardens Naturally

You might have seen cats strolling in your garden if you live in a community with several neighborhood cats. Similarly, you might still be worried about growing your plants if you have a cat in your house. Hence, instead of getting nervous, it’s better to understand how to get rid of cats naturally.


Eliminate the Food Source

Eliminating the food supply is the best way of keeping cats away from your garden. Garbage cans should never overflow, and their lids should be tight enough to prevent spills. This helps in ensuring you don’t invite animals to your house by leaving food leftovers in the open. Additionally, avoid feeding cats if you grow plants in your home.


Laying Chicken Wire around the Plants

Installing chicken wire on the ground and covering it up with dirt will keep cats out of your garden. The rough texture of these wires discourages cats from entering the space. You can even make a fence using chicken wire.


Motion Activated Sprinklers

Motion Activated Sprinklers

Installing sprinklers that activate the moment it detects any movement can also work. The moment a cat or any other animal tries to enter your garden, the motion-activated sprinklers would squirt water and scare them away.


Putting Citrus Peels Around Them

Cats hate the smell of limes, oranges, lemons, and other citrus fruits. Hence, tossing citrus peel inside the garden can work wonders. However, ensure you don’t forget to compost the peels and rinds.


Grow Repellent Plants Nearby

Grow Repellent Plants Nearby

Some plants emit a repulsive scent. Coleus Canina, also known as Scaredy Cat Plant, repels dogs and cats outside. Other repellent plants you may grow include Citronella, Geraniums, Lavender, Rue, etc.


Sprinkling Predatory Animals Urine

Sprinkling the urine of foxes or coyotes around the perimeter of your garden is an excellent way of deterring cats from entering your yard. The powdered form of urine from such animals can be purchased online or from a local store near you.


Installing Ultrasonic Devices

Ultrasonic devices combined with motion sensors are designed to generate high-frequency alerts that reduce any incursions of cats. Although the sound irritates cats, it is undetectable to human ears.


Prickly Surfaces

Prickly Surfaces

Cats avoid venturing in areas having prickly surfaces and prefer to walk over soft and loose dirt. Hence, adding twigs, pine cones, or eggshells will discourage them from entering the yard.
Motion-Sensitive Bells or Wind Chimes


You may hang a wind chime or install motion-sensitive bells to rattle a cat from approaching your space. Even a simple pebble or rock inside a jar can do the work.


Using Essential Oils in the Vegetable Garden

Using certain essential oils inside your garden is an excellent home remedy as cats are aversive to specific scents. Orange, Lavender, Grapefruit, Lime, Peppermint, or Citronella oils are good options. Mix three parts of water with one piece of any of the oils above and spray around the garden.


Coffee Grounds

Coffee Grounds

As a cat deterrent and fertilizer, coffee grounds are excellent repellents. You can scatter some coffee grounds around the plants to prevent cats from pooping in the flower beds. You can add some coffee grounds to the plant as a natural fertilizer. In this case, you have a two-and-one solution, which is ideal.


What Smell Keeps Cats Away from Plants and Vegetables?

What Smell Keeps Cats Away from Plants and Vegetables

Cats hate the smell of lavender, pennyroyal, lemon thyme, rue, and Coleus Canina. You may plant some of these in your garden as cats stay away from places having strong citrus scents. Sprinkling such scents are also useful.


What Plants Do Cats Hate?

What Plants Do Cats Hate

Apart from the plants mentioned above, cats hate going near certain plants. Here are some of the plants that cats don’t enjoy being nearby.

  • Citronella
  • Catnip
  • Curry Plant
  • Geraniums
  • Lemongrass
  • Lavender
  • Pennyroyal
  • Rosemary


Why Do Cats Like to Eat Plants?

In general, cats will eat plants to help them vomit when they are feeling ill. Some theories also suggest that they eat plants due to dietary deficiency in tracing nutrients and obtaining micronutrients, vitamins, folic acids, and minerals. Although the exact answer isn’t available, it might be that they love eating plants just because they like their taste.


Conclusion: How to Keep Cats out of Plants and Vegetable Gardens

In summary, there are numerous ways to keep cats out of gardens and plants.  Some ways to stop cats from getting into your plants are with chicken wire, adding sprinklers, or putting some citrus-smelling fruit around the plants. Also, if you end up placing some coffee grounds in and around the plant to stop cats from getting at it, you are giving your plants a two-for-one special. Cats hate coffee grounds, and plants can use their nutrients to grow healthy and strong, so it is a win-win scenario.


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