Source: Express (Extract)
Posted: December 4, 2022

If you live around neighbours who have cats then you’ve probably gone outside a time or two and noticed some unwelcome presents waiting for you in your gardens. To avoid this happening a gardening expert has shared to prevent cats using your garden as their public toilet.

Many love cats, but when left to roam free in gardens, they can cause a great deal of damage to lawns and plants. Thankfully, gardens can be strategically designed to help reduce the impact that pets have in the garden when they are eating, digging and carrying out their business. Leading garden retailer, Hayes Garden World, have conducted research into the most common problems that Brits have when it comes to pets messing up their gardens. As such, their gardening expert, Angela Slater, has released comments answering these common questions and sharing preventative measures that can be taken to reduce their impact.

One of the first ways Angela claimed to stop cats pooing and peeing in gardens is to ensure there is no space for them to go to the toilet.

Bushes and shrubs are a great natural way to deter cats from your flowerbeds.

By planting them close together, gardeners will remove the space a cat has to dig and move around in, so they’ll be less interested in your garden and move on to somewhere with more room.

The expert said: “It’s important to keep your herbaceous borders packed with plants so there is no bare soil where cats can dig.”

“Ensure your soil is wet, provided it is not to the detriment to the health of the plants, as cats don’t like sodden wet soil.”

There are even certain plants gardeners can grow to “keep cats away” according to the expert.

She said: “There is a plant available in the summer, aptly named ‘Scaredy Cat’ (Coleus canina) which is said to keep cats away. However, if you have a large garden, you will need to plant a lot.

Results from Hayes’ customers have been mixed, with some gardeners swearing by it and others saying that it is a complete waste of money.”

Another way to “repel” cats from gardens so they don’t end up fouling there is to remove all traces of food.

It goes without saying, if for those who don’t like cats being in their garden, don’t leave food out for them. Cats are opportunistic eaters, so if they know you have food in your garden, they are going to keep coming back in the hopes of finding more.

Make sure any bird food you put out is kept off the ground and placed somewhere hard for a cat to reach, and don’t feed any cats you don’t want coming back.

Angela said: “In terms of food, don’t leave scraps around after a barbecue as it will only encourage cats to visit. Chopped bananas and citrus peel are said to repel cats.

“However, if you have a large garden you will have to spread an awful lot otherwise, they will just move out of range of the offending material.”

More of an outlandish hack, but according to the expert lion poo works as a great cat deterrent. The gardening guru said: “Another hack is using lion poo to deter cats. If they think there is another cat around, they will move to a cat-free territory.”

Households can also purchase water and sound deterrents. Angela explained: “It’s always an option to install an automatic deterrent, such as a sprinkler system or a high-pitched noise system.”

Cats detest water so gardeners can use it in the outdoor space to keep them from fouling. Gardeners can also use a hose or a spray bottle if they don’t want to spend money on a sprinkler.

If all else fails, Angela advised building a safe area for cats. For those who don’t mind cats being in their garden and just really want to stop them from destroying flowerbeds, try creating a cat safe space.

This will encourage them to pee and poo in the safe space instead of in the flowers.

The expert said: “You could place a litter tray outside to encourage cats to use a designated area or leave an area of bare soil out of sight and smell of the house.”

For cats to keep using this area, gardeners will need to make sure the area is cleaned regularly.