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19 Tips on How to Keep Cats Out of Plants or Pots

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You are losing your plants day by day because your cat loves them more than you do. You need to learn how to keep cats out of plants or your pots urgently. 

Do you ever need to deal with your feline friends living in your home getting into your houseplants, flowers, containers or pot plants, or any greenery inside your home or outside in the garden? 

Yes, probably you have to; if you are sharing your home with some cuties or have some neighbor cats hanging around in your garden. To find out the best solutions to keep the cats away from the garden, just keep reading…

You Are Not Alone With Cats Damaging Garden And Lawns

Apparently, this is a common issue among home gardeners and pet owners. However, as every single cat inside or outside of your home has its own personality and characteristics, no absolute answer comes from any experts or vets to fix the issue.

Although it sounds a bit cruel, it’s essential that your focus here has to be to find what the cats hate seeing, what plants they hate, and make them subject to it every single time they approach your plants.

My wife and I love our plants as well as our cats, but no matter what we did in the past, how high and out of sight we placed our plants, it didn’t work even a bit, and we couldn’t figure out how to keep cats out of plants.

Our cats achieved to reach them every time. She was upset with this problem as her plants kept dying. We had to find an absolute solution to keep our cats out of plants.

Should we keep the plants in an isolated room where the cats can’t reach them at all? We had to find a way out.

You might also like this: How gardening helps you lose weight

Not only Indoors, But It’s Also A Problem In The Home Gardens

Besides that, if you have a garden outside the home, containers or pots with growing bushes or grown vegetables inside, stray cats in your neighborhood can be a plague for you and an excellent way to distress your fragile bushes or plants as they keep digging and playing around your plants in your absence.

You Need To Understand The Animals

General characteristics of cats are often digging and urinating in container plants or pots. Besides that, other favorite things they like to do are chewing the colorful flower leaves, and plant stems that affect the plants’ health.

Just like my own cats, they don’t like to touch other plants around but want to enjoy my wife’s lovely flowers.

Obviously, we can find a solution by moving them to an unreachable point in the room, so cats can’t reach them at all… either we can.

What I mean here is, that’s not a way for us to go around the issue as we don’t want to enjoy our flowers except the place we love to. So you need to learn how to stop cats pooping in your garden or doing other undesired stuff.

So how to keep cats out of potted plants or the entire garden? How can you create a ‘military zone,’ keep off!’ signboard that they can understand?

How to keep cats out of plants and pots?

Here is some compilation of smart ways which we can call every single of them ‘cat repellents’ to give a try, some of which I’ve tried at home to keep the cats away, as well. Those practices will make your cats just ‘uncomfortable’ and will work to keep them out, so your plants will survive. It’s all a win-win situation.

1) Spraying Cayenne Pepper to keep the cats away

Mix up 1 teaspoon of cayenne in 1/2 cup of water, put it in a spray bottle, and spray it on your plants. Because the solution has a dark color, it may change the tone of light-colored flowers a bit, but it works.

Here are your spicy flowers! Your car will come around the plant, take a sniff, and leave it there as soon as possible as he is not interested in it at all. So spraying cayenne is a good way of keeping them away.

How to keep cats out of plants or pots? https://organicgardeningeek.com pepper
Cayenne Pepper

2) Placing A Tin Foil

How to keep cats out of potted plants? https://organicgardeningeek.com foil

As cats don’t like walking on slippery and shiny surfaces, placing tin foils around the bottom of your plants will be a good way of keeping them away. After he learns not to go there anymore, you can remove the foils.

3) Create a Sticky Surface

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It’s similar to the tin foil process. Creating a temporary sticky surface around your plants with materials like double-sided tapes (in some situations, it might not be practical) will be enough to keep your cats away as they hate touching sticky things. Again, you can remove them after they realized the situation.

4) Citrus or Orange Peels

How to keep cats out of potted plants with Orange Peels? https://organicgardeningeek.com orange peels

Cats hate this smell too! So placing the peels around your plants and in the containers or pots is a temporary but good way of keeping them away.

Will orange peels really keep cats away?

Yes. Citrus oils, which may be found in the peels of oranges and other citrus fruits, might be enough to deter cats from entering your garden. Using the orange peels or rinds correctly will keep troublesome cats away from your plants, saving them from the harm they inflict.

However, this will be a temporary and partial solution. Because while some cats will hate it, others will ignore it and start linking the peels. Cats are curious animals.

5) Decorative Rocks Or Gravel

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How to Prevent the cats from digging the dirt in your pot or container is such an easy thing by placing some stones and covering the dirt if your only problem is cats using your plant dirt as a litter box. You can collect those stones in various shapes, colors, or sizes from the seaside or buy them from local stores. But in case you might like, I added the links in the picture. You can directly click on the images and purchase.

6) Buy And Plant Cat Grass.

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If It’s your own kitten living in your home and you see him occasionally chewing your plants or flowers, the problem can possibly be that your cat might be dying for something green to eat.

It might be a wise choice to plant some green for him to chew whenever he wishes. You can also find cat grasses in your local pet shops. Those Pet shops sell cat grass in a small container.

What you need to do is just raising them by watering them adequately. Remember, cats need plants too, and as they live 7/24 at home, they might be trying to find a solution to this neediness.

You can also get some catnip, as cats like it too. Again you can click on the pictures to purchase one of them if you want.

7) Vegetable Net Bags to keep the cats out of plants and pots

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You can also use fruit and vegetable net bags to keep the cats away, which like to dig and leave. If you like to choose that way, cut a bag into a circle to match the diameter of the container or the pot, then cut down the middle.

In the middle, up to the plant base, tape each side to the rim by using clear packaging tape. While you can comfortably keep watering and fertilizing, they will keep hating the netting and stay away!

8) Use ‘Featured’ Cat Food

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If it’s an indoor cat, then changing your cat’s food may help you. As cat foods have different ingredients, some work just fine for indoor cats by satisfying their instincts to eat plants all around the house.

‘The Purina cat food‘ is one of them and is just for indoor cats, and after I started feeding our cats with this, they stopped being interested in our plants. By the way, this one is not more expensive than the regular Purina cat chow.

9) Prepare An Uncomfortable Surface

https://organicgardeningeek.com placing fork in the garden

Cats like to hang around in the gardens because of their sandy surfaces with dry dirt.

If your problem is in your home garden, you can prevent them from visiting by placing slightly blunt (not to hurt the cat) pointy objects, such as plant stakes, chopsticks, etc., around the garden or particularly in between your bushes or plants.

Our purpose with doing this is just eliminating the space where they can comfortably dig or rest.

10) Non-Toxic Scents to repel the cats

https://organicgardeningeek.com cat smelling

Similar to the cayenne pepper, as we talked about above, you can safely use non-toxic scents in your garden as well as indoors. Animals are sensitive creatures, and when they don’t like the smell of anything, they will just leave the place as soon as possible.

So you can use cayenne pepper, orange peels, coffee grounds, black pepper, spraying the leaves diluted lemon juice or orange oil directly, as repeller all around your garden or at a specific point where the cats generally rest or enter.

11) Planting Plants That Cats Won’t Chew

https://organicgardeningeek.com cats chew plants

There are some plants of which cats hate chewing or even approaching because of their intense scent.

If growing some of them in your home is not a problem for you either, you can have a go for growing some of those plants that cats hate for their strong aroma, such as Rosemary (which you can also use as a herb in your kitchen), scaredy-cat plant (the same smell effect), rose, cactus, etc.

12) Rewarding Them For Staying Away From The Plants

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Instead of keeping reacting with negative reinforcement, using some positive ones when you see him leaving your plants or deciding not to approach, you can reward his behavior.

Observing and seeing him just passing away a plant or deciding not to dig the dirt is an example of praising him.

13) Create An Isolated Room

How to keep cats out of potted plants? https://organicgardeningeek.com isolated sunroom

If you can’t find a better solution, you can also try to create a plant room and keep the door closed to keep cats out. A sunroom is a good idea for this.

14) Using Motion-Detecting Sprinklers

How to keep cats out of potted plants? https://organicgardeningeek.com motion detection sprinkles for cats
how do you repel cats out of your garden with Motion detection sprinklers for cats https://organicgardeningeek.com
Motion detection sprinklers for cats

It’s evident that if we list the things cats hate, water will be at the top. While there are many reasons why they hate it, one of them is they have permeable fur that is sensitive to water.

If you like to keep the cats away from plants, you can use motion-detecting sprinklers, which can be a very effective way of repelling the cats in your garden.

After you obtain these sprinkles, it may take a few days or weeks to detect or decide the best installation spots, but you will totally get rid of this problem once you determine those places.

Personally, I would recommend detection sprinklers like the Contech Scarecrow Motion-Activated Animal Deterrent, Orbit Yard Enforcer, or the Hoont Jet Blaster, as I use those brands because of their highly positive reviews, and they are the leaders in the industry.

Remember that those sprinkles are useful for other kinds of domestic or wild animals, too, like squirrels, skunks, hens, birds, and other pests.

15) Installing ultrasonic repellers in the garden

How to keep cats out of potted plants? https://organicgardeningeek.com ultrasonic repellents for cats

As used within the phrase “ultrasonic cat scarer,” the word ultrasonic” simply means that the sound emitted is above the human hearing range but well within cats. Humans can generally hear sound waves up to 20 kHz. All sounds above 20 kHz are said to be “ultrasonic.”

How, Why, and Where to use ultrasonic cat repellents?

Cats are very territorial creatures – problems usually occur when your garden happens to be within the cat’s territory.

The one behavioral trait cats all have is geared towards their territory. They will mark it by spraying, scratching, fouling, and urinating. This marking tells all other cats in the area that this is “its patch” and “keep out.”

Some of the most significant issues homeowners have when a neighbor’s cat enters their garden include depositing and burying feces on their lawn, vegetable patch, or flowerbed, or the fact that cats will actively take birds from feeding stations or feeding stations fish from ponds. 

Whatever the reason, the fact is that very few people want cats in their garden.

Our ultrasonic Cat scarer provides a helpful tool when trying to scare or frighten a cat away from your garden. Best results are always achieved by positioning the unit facing the area most affected by unwanted cats. As a rule of thumb, the unit will scare cats away from 10 meters in front of it ( although it can detect cats up to 12 meters away.)

FAQ

Q. Will the Ultrasonic Cat Scarers damage my pets’ ears or hurt them?

A: No. It gives out a short ultrasonic sound that only dogs, cats, and foxes can hear. They will move away from the noise. However, when pets or children are playing in the garden, you can turn off the unit for peace of mind.

Q. Why do animals move away from the Ultrasonic Cat Scarers?

A: The unit emits a very high frequency of sound (around 25KHz). Cats find this level very uncomfortable, a bit like humans cringing at the sound of fingers being scraped down a chalkboard.

Q: Is it effective immediately?

A: This varies, although the scaring effect can be almost immediate. It can take up to 2 – 4 weeks to have full effect on animals that feed or foul in the area habitually. Areas that are visited only occasionally have quicker results – within 7 days.

Q: Will it work through a fence?

A: No. The waves will be absorbed. To scare the cats, it is best to position them in an open space.

Q: Will I have to constantly replace the batteries, or can I plug them in?

A: In high usage areas, plug it in with a 9v DC adaptor (not included in the pack). However, typical usage of scaring cats 10 times a day means batteries will last 3-4 months.

I recommend motion-activated the Hoont Powerful Solar Battery Powered Ultrasonic Outdoor Pest and Animal Repeller or Eliminator Robust Electronic Solar to you to go for, as not only now their upgraded versions are available but also it can efficiently monitor up to a 30-feet range.

Just like motion-detecting sprinklers, you might need to determine the best spot to place these too. Please pay attention to the entrance spots of stray cats in your neighborhood prior to installing them in your garden.

16) Installing wall spikes to keep the cats out of the garden

How to keep cats out of potted plants? https://organicgardeningeek.com wall spikes for cats

If you can’t resolve the problems with those simple methods I have already explained above, those last ones are the other professional solutions. Installing physical barriers around the border of the garden territory is one of the better options.

If you have a fence or wall around your garden, you can safely place spikes along the top of them as It’s practical and one of the guaranteed ways of preventing cats or other undesired animals from entering sneakily.

Those 3 methods above are some of the paid ways to repel cats from a garden. If you just want to feel comfortable and don’t mess with changing the orange peels or refreshing the peppers, or stick trash plastics in your garden, you can go for those methods.

17) Using cat repellent gel crystals

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Cat repellent gels offer a harmless yet effective means of deterring even the most persistent cat fouling and territory marking in particular areas of the garden. Those cat repellent jelly-like gel crystals are highly effective in all weather conditions and, over a period of weeks, will condition the cat to move away from and keep cats out of treated areas. 

These highly effective products were designed to stop cat fouling and keep cats out of your flower beds; this clever anti-cat fouling system works for weeks without having to pay any attention to it at all.

They ensure you can keep cats out by setting up a ‘zone defense’ around a flower bed, tomatoes beds, flower pots, or area you wish them to keep away.

The features of gels:

  • A Cat Repellent gel discourages cats from fouling lawns, gardens, and patios.
  • It deters cats from digging up and fouling flower beds, scorching lawns with their urine, and territory marking walls, rubbish bins, fences, and gates.
  • They are practical, economical, and environmentally friendly to people, plants, and pets.
  • Cat repellent gel remains active in rain or shine.
  • They are biodegradable and a long-term deterrent, keeping cats out protecting your property from messy attention.
  • Simple home-garden cat repellent gels are easy to apply to lawns, plant beds, paths, patios, and other horizontal surfaces. They grow in the rain and shrink in the sun, releasing a citrus odor that deters cats.

FAQ about car repellent gels

What are the advantages and disadvantages of the Gelly crystal cat repellent system?

It will prevent cat fouling for a month or more, even after rainfall. However, it does not get rid of the cat from a very large area, and that is why it’s recommended to use them as packs for this cat deterring method.

Using the pack as described, you can keep cats out of a flower bed of 7.32sq m (80 sq ft). For example, if your flower bed is 6m (20ft) long by 1.22m (4ft) wide, this pack will easily protect it.

What happens one month after the gel has become less effective?

These gels can be dug into the ground for a soil enhancer. Over weeks the cats will be trained to move away from the treated areas to those where they can detect evidence of previous fouling odors.

18) Using Cat Urine Cleaners and Cat Urine Removers

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Cat urine is not the most pleasant of smells and appears to have the ability to literally linger for years if not treated quickly with a cat urine cleaner.

Cat urine goes through a specific decaying process, and as it ages in your carpets, the bacteria feeding off the waste converts it to gas, giving off that all too familiar smell. The cat uses these smells to mark its territory in many cases, sending messages to other cats in the area.

It is essential to completely eradicate all odors and find every single area the cat has marked by using a specific cat urine remover. Unfortunately, household cleaning products do not eliminate the smell to a cat’s nose, even if humans can’t smell it, and it’s possible the cat will continue to overmark the area.

A specific cat urine cleaner that incorporates enzymes is the only substance that will work long-term on getting rid of cats urine, its odor, and the stain it leaves behind.

A cat urine cleaner is specifically designed to eliminate the odor and stain left by cats and kittens urinating inside houses. This excellent bio-enzymatic formula breaks down the harmful bacteria and literally eats the organic waste that causes the smell and staining.

It can get rid of cats’ urine simply by spraying the cat urine remover directly on both porous and non-porous surfaces. It is 100% biodegradable, safe for the environment, and can effectively use fresh and old stains. Included with the 500ml spray formula is the ingenious black light urine finder.

This takes all the guesswork out of finding where the cat has soiled. A simple switch on in a dark room, and you will find that the dried cat urine will glow under the ultraviolet light, enabling you to treat only the specific areas that need treating and helping to identify all areas where the cat has urinated, be it fresh soiling or old, culminating in total odor and stain eradication.

Why does the cat continually urinate inside the house?

There are several reasons why cats urinate inside. The most usual is marking, where a cat marks its territory by spraying urine, leaving an odor that other cats can identify. If these areas are disturbed, it will reaffirm its territory by re-spraying.

This happens when normal household cleaners are used as they do not effectively remove the odor, only mask it. Other causes of cat urination are old age, diseases of the urinary tract, or a change in the cat’s environment such as a new child, moving house, or the introduction of a new pet.

19) Do moth balls keep cats away?

Yes. But the reason I added this as the last item here is to warn that I strongly disagree with using them to repel cats. Mothballs are toxic to cats, dogs, snakes, birds and other animals. They are basically made up of two chemicals, which are pesticides.

Image credit: amazon

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