You love your cat and your plants, but maybe your cat loves your plants a little bit too much. Whether kitty likes to dig in potted plant soil, nibble leaves, or simply knock pots over, here are 10 different ways to keep cats away from plants (and how to keep plants away from cats!).
Hang Plants From the Cieling
If you’re wondering how to keep cats away from plants, one way is to put your plants out of your cat’s reach. Install a hook in your ceiling to hang your small- to medium-sized plants. With a boho chic macrame plant hanger and a trailing plant like this pothos, this solution also makes a stylish statement. Ensure you hang it from a high ceiling to prevent your furry pals from launching themselves at this dangly temptation.
Keep Plants Up High With Plant Shelves
Another option to keep your plants away from cats is to keep them high up on a shelf. Add plants to your bookshelf, or convert your favourite shelf into a plant shelf. Shelves combined with hanging plants can make for a cute and cozy plant canopy, like in this home office. Make sure the shelves that your plants sit on don’t leave too much room for your cats to climb onto and hang out around the plants. To do this, try adding multiple plants to one shelf or scattering books and heavy decorations around your planters.
Train Your Cat to Leave Your Plants Alone
Although cats may not be as easy to train as dogs, with persistence and consistency (and maybe some delicious treats), it is possible. Training your cat to leave your plants alone may be your best bet if you love your current plant set-up or don’t want to get rid of any plants that are toxic to pets. Whenever you see your kitten clamber into your plants, give them an authoritative “no” and spritz them with a spray bottle of cold water.
Decorative Gravel Prevents Unwanted Digging
If your cat’s favourite pass-time is digging in your plant pots or using your monstera pot as a litterbox, this trick is for you. Try using decorative stones of varying sizes – as small as gravel or as large as pebbles – as top dressing. Covering the top of the plant’s soil with stones can deter cats from digging in it and eliminate any litterbox confusion. If you have larger planters and your cat has a habit of snoozing in them, this trick may even dissuade them from this behaviour. After all, a bed of rocks isn’t particularly comfortable.
Opt for Pet-Safe Plants
If your cat likes to lick or nibble on plant leaves, it may be a good idea to opt for pet-safe plants – like the fittonia or polka-dot plant – especially on surfaces your cat can reach. Of course any plant can be toxic when ingested in large quantities, but plants that are safe for pets and kids decrease the likelihood of irritation if your cat eats a little bit.
Create a Plant Room
If you have a spare bedroom or home office, turn it into a plant room! Moving all your plants into one room and keeping the door closed is a great way to keep all or most of your plants away from your cats in one go, while still enjoying your indoor greenery. Be sure to choose a well-lit room, like this bright boho sunroom.
A Terrarium or Cloche (Which Also Keeps Humidity Up)
Another way to protect plants from curious cats is to cover them with a glass cloche or put them in a terrarium. The glass enclosure keeps plants out of your pet’s reach and creates a humidity field around the plant, which can help keep many plants happy. Plus, a terrarium looks super cute on a coffeetable! However, make sure to research the type of plant you will be covering. If a plant is not partial to a high-humidity environment, covering it with a cloche can result in your plant weakening or even dying.
Cover Your Pot with Aluminum Foil
Many cats dislike the sound and texture of aluminum foil, with some even running for cover when their owners use it in the kitchen. So what’s tin foil got to do with how to keep cats away from potted plants? You can wrap strips of foil around the top of your plant’s pot, being careful to cover the soil, to keep your cat from digging. It may not be a pretty solution, but it works!
A Sticky Situation
Many cats can’t stand anything sticky on their paws. Use this to your advantage by covering the table or shelf around your plant in sticky double-sided tape. Your cat will avoid the sticky texture and leave your plant alone. You don’t necessarily have to keep this tape around your plants forever. Foster the habit for 4-8 weeks and soon enough, your kitten may simply lose interest in being around your plants. If their curiosity returns, simply add the tape back.
Related: 20 Plants That Are Poisonous to Cats
Give Cat Grass a Try
Another strategy you can try is redirecting your cat’s attention to a plant that’s ok for them. You can find cat grass at many pet stores and even grocery stores. Keep a few pots of it around the house and see if they pique your cat’s interest. This can be a valuable training tool and save your plants. Plus, it’s very cute to watch your little furry friend interact with and chew on their very own grass.