6 Effective Ways to Keep Cats Out of Gardens & Flower Beds
Stray neighborhood cats could become a nuisance to your garden as their act of playing around and digging could cause all sorts of havoc to your garden bed. If you are dealing with a cat crisis in your backyard then here are six effective methods you could use to deter them from entering your garden and flower beds.
1. Install Motion-detecting Sprinklers
If there is one thing most cats don’t like, it’s water. There are a number of reasons why cats may not like water. One of the more common reasons is due to their fur not being entirely water-resistant. Their fur can get easily waterlogged so that’s why we most often see cat owners having to fight their cats to get them bathed. Motion-detecting sprinklers, for that reason, can be very effective at deterring cats. When a movement is detected, these sprinklers release a burst of water in that direction. It may take a few days or weeks to figure out the best place to install these sprinklers but once you have identified those spots, you could say goodbye to those cats (unless they happen to be super determined). As far as recommendations go, we would recommend detection sprinklers like the Orbit Yard Enforcer or the Hoont Jet Blaster. Keep in mind that these repellents can also be used for other pests and rodents like squirrels, skunks, and birds.
2. Install Ultrasonic Repellent Devices
Much like the motion-detecting sprinklers, the ultrasonic repellent devices detect movements in a specific range then emits an ultrasonic noise that scares the cats away. You won’t hear the actual noise as they are set to a range that can be only heard by the animals. Some ultrasonic devices, such as the Aspectek Ultrasonic Repeller can monitor up to a range of 25 feet. You will probably have to experiment with the placement of these devices. Prior to the placement, it will help to understand where the neighborhood cats are entering from.
3. Set up an Unwelcome Surface
Most cats prefer gardens and backyards that have a sort ground surface (e.g. sand and dry dirt). Hence, one way to deter cats from visiting your garden over and over is by placing pointy (but slightly blunt) objects around the garden. Examples include pine cones, chop sticks, and plant stakes. The idea is to prevent the cats from having a space where they can rest and lie down. These objects can be placed specifically in-between your plants and crops.
4. Use Non-toxic Scents
Did you know that cats are really sensitive to smell? They aren’t as sensitive as dogs but if cats smell anything they don’t like then they will peace out immediately. That leaves the important question. What are the non-toxic scents that deter cats? Examples include cayenne pepper, black pepper, coffee grounds, and orange peels. Try sprinkling some of these things around the area where the stray cats usually make their entrance.
5. Physical Barriers
If none of the above worked then it may be time to set up some physical barriers around the perimeter of the garden. One way of setting up a barrier is by implementing spikes on top of the fence. These spikes are sharp but not to the point where they’ll hurt the cats. This method may not work for all cats but it can definitely do a good job of keeping the majority of the unwanted visitors away from your garden. An example of a good cat fence spike is the Cat Repeller Fence. These spikes can be easily installed on fences via adhesive or screws.
6. Create a Diversion
So you tried all of the above and you found none were effective at deterring the stray cats. It may be time to accept that the cats are here to stay but one thing you could at least do is to divert them away from your valuable crops and flowers. There are two common ways of doing this. One is by using the almighty catnip to attract the cats to a specific spot in your backyard. Another is to build an outdoor litter box. Use these methods with caution, however, as they may end up attracting more cats to your backyard.