Source: Express (Extract)
Posted: July 06, 2024

Cats have the awful habit of using other people’s gardens as toilets, but there is a simple and safe way to deter them for good by using three items you likely already have in your kitchen.

Dealing with neighborhood cats using your garden as their litterbox can be frustrating. Fortunately, there’s a simple solution using three common kitchen scraps you probably already have.

Cats often use flowerbeds for defecation and marking territory, but it’s crucial to prevent them from using vegetable patches as their feces may contain parasites harmful to humans.

Yet Jordan Ardoin, a gardening expert from Lawn Love, has revealed a natural method to deter cats using food waste that would typically be discarded.

He said: “Cats have extra sensitive noses, so even scents that are barely noticeable to us can be overbearing to them. Some scents are pungent enough to make cats want to stay away.”

A highly effective method to repel cats is using peels from oranges, limes, or lemons due to their strong citrus scent, which cats find unpleasant.

To deter cats, simply place citrus peels around your garden in areas where cats typically enter or lounge. According to Jordan Ardoin, a gardening expert from Lawn Love, you can also use a citrus-scented spray for a similar effect.

Jordan suggests: “Scatter fresh citrus peels or use a citrus-scented spray.”

Alternatively, you can create a homemade spray by steeping citrus peels in boiling water, transferring the mixture to a spray bottle, and applying it near plants. However, be aware that the effectiveness of citrus can diminish over time, especially after rain, so regular reapplication is necessary to maintain its potency.

Coffee grounds also deter cats due to their scent. Jordan advises: “Spread used coffee grounds around the perimeter of the area where you want to discourage cats from going, after brewing your coffee.”

Coffee grounds will not only keep cats away but are known to be one of the best natural deterrents against slugs as well. However, if you are not a coffee drinker, tea leaves can also be used.

If you have vinegar in your kitchen, this can also be used to keep cats away from fences and gates as cats will hate the pungent smell, but be careful using vinegar near any beloved plants.

Jordan said: “Apply watered-down or straight vinegar with a spray bottle. Don’t spray near your grass or garden, as vinegar kills plants.”

Combining vinegar, coffee grounds and citrus peels together to make a homemade cat repellant is an effective and safe way to keep cats out of the garden as they will likely be irritated by one of the scents.

Jordan advised, “Scent repellents can be unpredictable. What one cat finds repulsive, another may not mind at all. Experiment with different scent repellents in your yard to discover what works best for the cats in your area.”

It’s worth noting that online recommendations often suggest using strongly-scented essential oils to deter cats, but this approach is extremely harmful. Most essential oils are highly toxic to cats, and ingestion or direct skin contact can lead to vomiting, diarrhea, respiratory issues, liver damage, or other severe health issues.

While creating a strongly scented spray to keep cats out of the garden is straightforward, it’s crucial to avoid using essential oils in any homemade solutions.