How to Keep Cats Out of Your Garden? | The Natural Way

Written by Paul Hayes

Cats make excellent pets and companions. Because of curiosity, mating, hunting, eating, and establishing territory, some of them may stray into your yard or garden. But seeing them destroy your garden can be very annoying. So, you are wondering how to prevent them from coming back into your garden.

How to keep cats out of your garden? The best method is to keep your garden as hostile as possible for cats. You can also spread pinecones, chicken wire, or other sharp-edged materials. Install a cat deterrent device or a motion-activated sprinkler. Place citrus peels and essential oils. You may also build a fence.


There are a lot of ways to deter the cat from destroying your garden. Some of them are natural, while others are harmful. If you don’t want to harm your cat or your neighbor’s cat, learn about natural ways to keep cats out of your garden.

Do Cats Love Gardens?

Do Cats Love Gardens

Cats like to explore around, particularly in gardens that are under the bushes. They like to walk around in the grass or roll in soil or sand. Cats love to stay in shady areas where they can relax and sleep soundly.

Sometimes they are attracted to your garden because they like to eat your plants or watch a mouse, a bird, or other animals. They love to hide between pots or in nooks and crannies. Climbing is also one of their favorite activities since it helps them keep an eye on their territory.

What Do Cats Do in the Garden?

Cats love to stay in gardens to sleep and play around. But most of all, they also do a lot of digging. Finding your cat or any stray cat digging up your flower beds can be very frustrating.

The first thing that comes to mind is they are trying to hide their poop. However, this is not the only reason why they are digging.

What Do Cats Dig In the Garden?

Cats dig a hole to bury their urine and feces since its strong smell can attract wild predators. This is their way of keeping them safe.

Digging is also a way of sharpening their claws. Small animals such as birds and mice are sensitive to smell. By concealing their poop, cats have better chances of catching their prey. Sometimes they dig to hide their food or catch prey.

What Will Repel Cats From Your Garden?

What Will Repel Cats from My Garden

You can spread peels of citrus fruits, broken eggshells, pinecones, chicken wire, bark mulch, vinegar, or essential oils in your garden. Remove any shady structures or stagnant water, and keep the area clean to prevent them from hiding or sleeping.

You can also use cat repellent sprays, electronic noise devices, or motion-activated sprinkles. Spray them with water with the use of a water gun or garden hose. Put some plastic fences with spikes around your garden.

What Plants Repel Cats From Your Garden?

Another way of chasing away cats is to integrate plants that they hate, such as:

  • Scaredy Cat Plant (Coleus Canina)
  • Catnip (Nepeta cataria)
  • Rosemary (Rosmarinus officinalis)
  • Lavender (Lavandula)
  • Curry Plant (Helichrysum augustfolium)
  • Pennyroyal (Mentha pulegium)
  • Geraniums (Pelargonium)
  • Citronella (Pelargonium graveolens citrosa)
  • Rue (Ruta graveolens)
  • Lemongrass (Cymbopogon)

One of these will probably work on your garden.

How to Repel Cats From the Garden Naturally?

  • Spread natural materials such as citrus peels and essential oils.
  • Scatter pinecones, mulch, chicken wire, or stones so they will have difficulty walking in your garden.
  • Cats do not like the smell of certain plants such as rosemary, rue, scaredy cat plant, lavender, and others, so incorporate them in your garden.
  • Make a cat-repellent spray using natural ingredients.
  • Invest in a motion-activated sprinkler or spray them with water.
  • Install fences with spikes.

What Do Cats Hate the Most?

What Do Cats Hate the Most

Generally, cats are sensitive to smells, and there are a few scents that they do not like, such as rosemary, fresh herbs, thyme, lavender, etc. They also hate water and loud noises. Belly rubs, medicine, spoiled food, and rivalry make them uncomfortable.

Home Remedies to Repel Cats in the Garden

Are you looking for a safe, effective way of keeping your cat away from your garden? If you love your cats, then creating your cat repellent might be the best method. Homemade cat repellents are non-toxic; hence, they are not harmful to your cat or your neighbor’s cat.

Does Red Pepper Repel Cats in Your Garden?

Red pepper or cayenne pepper is an effective way of keeping the cats away from your garden. Although some cats may not be bothered by the smell, they will be irritated if this crushed red pepper gets into their fur or paws. Most especially if its spicy substance known as capsaicin gets into their nose or eyes.

Does Vaporub Repel Cats From Pooping in the Garden?

Cats do not like the smell of mint. Vaporub is menthol, so it can probably prevent them from pooping in your garden. However, some people claim that tigers, lions, and other large cats love the smell of menthol.

Will Apple Cider Vinegar Repel Cats?

Apple cider vinegar repels cats. To make your repellent, combine water and apple cider vinegar. Be sure that you are using a 1:1 ratio. Spray this repellent on your garden, and you won’t be seeing them again hanging out in your flower beds.

Related: How to Keep Cats Out of Your Yard, Garden, and Flowerbeds? | The Effective Guide

How to Make Homemade Cat Repellent?

Making your repellent is an effective and natural way to deter the cat away from your garden. It is also very easy to make.

Step 1: Pour the essential oil into the spray bottle.

Step 2: Add water to the bottle. Be sure to shake it well so that it can be mixed thoroughly.

Step 3: Spray the mixture in your garden.

How Do You Use Cayenne Pepper to Get Rid of Cats? (Steps)

How Do You Use Cayenne Pepper to Get Rid of Cats

Cayenne pepper includes capsaicin, the element that can drive away cats from your garden. Although you can spread cayenne pepper flakes in your garden, you can also make your repellent. 

Step 1: Combine 1.5 parts of dry mustard and one part of dried cayenne pepper.

Step 2: Add 2.5 parts of flour into the mixture.

Step 3: Finally, sprinkle the cat repellent on your garden. Another alternative is to mix the repellent on the soil, particularly in the areas where the cat loves to dig.

How Do You Stop Neighbors’ Cats to Enter Your Garden?

If you are already getting tired of your neighbors’ cats always visiting your garden, there are ways that you can stop this.

  • Put chippings or pebbles to prevent them from digging.
  • Grow your plants closely or choose prickly plants so they don’t have any hiding place anymore.
  • Avoid giving cats some food so they won’t return to your yard.
  • Always keep your flower beds wet since cats hate water.
  • Make some loud noises to get rid of them.
  • Build fences so they will have a hard time entering your garden.

What Happens if a Cat Poops in Your Garden?

Cat feces are toxic since it contains several parasites that can cause serious diseases, such as salmonella and toxoplasmosis. To reduce the chances of infection, you should wash your hands as well as the crops that you’ve harvested. Most of all, get rid of the feces carefully.

How Do You Get Rid of Cat Poop in Your Garden?

There is no need to replace all of the soil. Simply remove feces along with the soil near it. Dispose of them properly by placing the poop in a plastic bag before throwing them in the garbage can. Getting rid of the soil close to the feces can reduce the chances of cats returning to this area to discharge.

Does Human Urine Deter Cats From Your Garden?

Human urine can deter cats from your garden. When the cats smell the human urine, they will presume that another animal has been in their territory. It would be more effective if the urine is fresh and comes from an adult male.

In Case You Want the Other Way Around: How Do You Make Your Garden Cat Friendly?

Applying a few changes to your garden can prevent your cat from going to your neighbor’s garden or across the street. Creating a cat-friendly space is very easy to do. Simply provide them the things that they need, such as:

  • Shady areas to make them feel comfortable while relaxing or sleeping.
  • Areas where they can hide to make them feel safe.
  • A shelter such as trees or shrubs can protect them from the cold weather.
  • Fresh drinking water when they get thirsty.
  • Areas where they can defecate.
  • Places where they can climb to have a higher view of their territory.
  • Plants that they like to smell and explore.
  • Outdoor toys which are attached to a string are fun to play with during a windy day.
  • Keep other cats away from the garden to avoid competition.

List of Sources

Fact Sheet – Cat Deterrent Methods. (2017). City of Albany.

Nuisance Cats – How to deter them from your garden. Kingborough Council.

Cat Deterrent Tips. City of Mesa.

Advice on Cats. (2021). Dartford Borough Council.

Paul Hayes
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