Cat Proofing The Garden


I love them. And I don’t love them.

They’re so necessary for keeping the mouse population in check, but they can be such a pain sometimes. Especially come planting time.

After the chickens, cats are the next biggest menace in the garden. They think every raised bed is their personal litter box, and will scratch up every little seed and seedling if you don’t do something to protect them.

Our garden is fenced in, but that doesn’t keep them out. So I have to cover each individual bed until the plants are large enough that I can mulch heavily around them, which helps to deter the cats from scratching.

cat proofing garden
It’s a crude setup, but I use whatever I have to protect the planted beds. Here you can see some of the wire frames that come in handy.

cat proofing garden
I’ve also stretched wire fencing around beds, and stapled it to the railroad ties to completely fence it in. It’s a temporary set up, just until the plants get strong and established.

Milk crates also work really well for covering individual plants and protecting them from digging animals.

Like I mentioned, when the plants get bigger a thick layer of mulch- especially wood chips- works nicely for deterring cats from digging around them. You might also poke sticks into the ground, or old spoons or something, all around your plants to keep kitty out.

It’s a total pain to have to go to extra lengths to fence in an already fenced in garden. But the cat is very necessary around a country homestead where field and meadow mice are prevalent. You do the best you can to make everything work in harmony.

Anyone have a better way of cat proofing the garden?

4 thoughts on “Cat Proofing The Garden”

  1. We live out in the country, so I understand the value of cats keeping mice in check. Our barn always has evidence of mice.

    We also have the cutest chipmunks that enjoy my bird feeders and running around here and there. I hate to think of a cat killing one of them – I’m a crazy lady when it comes to animals – BUT, because of the damage they can do to a foundation, we decided to NOT scare off the cat that sometimes wonders into our yard.

    One of your garden fences is JUST like ours, and the milk crate is a great idea, maybe with a big rock sitting on top of it. 🙂

    As far as other ideas to keep cats (or a slew of other critters) out of your garden, I just wrote a post on that.

    My husband came up with a rather ingenious idea JUST for cats. 🙂

    12 Ways to Critter-Proof Your Garden

  2. You are singin’ my song, Kendra! I’ve been dealing with the same thing and have been dealing with it the same way. I’ve used leftover horse fencing stretched across the garden, which works really well when the garden is newly planted. After the garden is established, my kitty doesn’t want to scratch it up so much as she would like to lay in the cool carrot tops–so he smashes those. Gah! But seriously—I *just* did an episode on keeping critters out of the garden last week, so I guess we are tracking together!

    By the way–I so agree with you about the importance of cats on the homestead. I LOVE to have a good hunter or two around–such a great thing to know our furry friends are doing their job on the property!


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