It’s no secret that I am not a huge fan of cats. It’s not that I don’t think they are cute and cuddly, it’s just that I HATE them using my veggie garden as their own personal toilet. I have tried various methods to keep the cats away (orange peels, cayenne pepper, etc., etc.) and the one that has worked the best is to use cattle panel or some other wire structure (like chicken wire) that you can lay across the tops of your beds and the plants can come up around or through. I have also just set wire tomato cages or wire trellises (lying down) around your planting beds. Once the plants start to come up, they don’t seem as interested in the garden and I am able to remove most of the wire/cages. If needed, the wire panels can be left on the ground and the plants will just grow around them (assuming you used a wide panel wire, like cattle panel).
Short of this working as a deterrent, I have actually considered getting my own outdoor cat – sort of an “If you can’t beat them, join them” approach. I have heard that having your own cat keeps other cats away because they establish their territory, which includes your garden/yard and other cats will mostly stay out. I have also heard that they won’t go in your garden because it is their territory. Additionally my son really wants one. I am betting though, that my cat would make friends with all the neighbor cats and then have smashing good parties in my yard at night with them all using the garden as their toilet. Just my luck. Have fun defending your garden!
Photo Credit: Tambako the Jaguar