Cat Repellent Herbs

Updated February 21, 2017

Stray cats wandered into your yard and began playing with your garden--nibbling on leaves, digging in the dirt and leaving quite a mess. Or worse, perhaps amorous male cats stray around your home, attracting females for mating. Both of these situations call for action, as does an allergic homeowner needing relief. However, building a cat-proof fence may not be financially practical. If you want some natural and budget-friendly ways to keep cats away from your home, look to herbs. There are several that cats really don't like.

Border Herbs

Plant a perimeter of cat repellent herbs around your home or garden. Some good suggestions include rosemary, lavender rue, and garlic. Another option is Coleus Canina, a specially cultivated herb, and cats hate the smell. Note that you will have to sow this herb annually. It survives best in well-drained soil.

Dry Herbs

Sprinkle dry herbs into the soil around areas where the cats frequent. Suggestions include cayenne pepper, orange or lemon peel, and dry mustard. Repeat this treatment about once a month as the herb's scent decomposes with time.

Herbal Oils

Apply essential herbal oil around your home and garden. Accomplish this by mixing about one cup of water with 10 drops of oil. Transfer this to a spray bottle then squirt a light coating where you need it. The most commonly recommended herbs for this task are cinnamon oil, eucalyptus oil and peppermint oil.

Weed Out Cat-attracting Plants

Check your yard and garden for cat-attracting plants. It may be that you unwittingly put out a letter of invitation for wandering felines. Most people know that cats love cat mint, but they also like Valerian and cat thyme (Teucrium marum - different from culinary thyme). Removing these may remedy your problem.

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About the Author

Patricia Telesco has been a writer since 1992. She has produced more than 60 books with publishers that include HarperCollins and Simon & Schuster. Her articles have appeared in "Woman's World" and "National Geographic Today." Telesco holds a Bachelor of Arts in English from the University of Buffalo.