in the garden
have a problem with my cat digging in my veggie garden. He has damaged
and uprooted many seedlings and young plants and I'm worried about
eating produce that has been growing near cat excrement. He is not
deterred by commercial repellents. Do you have any tips for keeping
cats out of the garden? Is there anything I can plant amongst my
veggies that will keep him away?
also have problems with cats digging in the garden. A cat loves
nothing more than to do its business in freshly turned soil but
it's usually discouraged when the plants are big enough to cover
the soil, which is why soil with little seedlings is particularly
I can think of two approaches
to discouraging the cat. The first is some kind of physical barrier.
If I have very small seedlings, I often place a net of chicken mesh
over the top until the plants get bigger. This is very successful
and can be moved around as needed. If you don't have any chicken
wire at hand you could try inserting a load of bamboo stakes or
sticks amongst the plants - physically preventing the cat from parking
The other approach is
related to the fact that cats usually sniff the soil before defecating,
so placing something strong smelling or irritating can discourage
them. I have heard of people using chilli powder or pepper (a bit
mean really) or even citrus skins. As long as you wash your produce
well, I wouldn't worry too much about eating it.
by Dr Dan Blanchon from Unitec's Diploma in Sustainable Horticulture and Bachelor
of Resource Management.
with permission from NZOOM Home and Garden content,
from the previous
The views expressed here are not necessarily those of the RNZIH