It would appear the war with the local cats being waged in my garden may finally be coming to an end.
Viewing our house before buying it turned out to be quite an uncomfortable moment, we knew the house had a sitting tennant who would be moved on as their home for seven years was sold out from under them, what we didn’t expect was that said tenant would be quite literally sitting watching TV as we were shown around the house.
During a little forced polite conversation we established that there were three cats living in the house with them. No big deal breaker there, I’m a cat-lover myself and if properly cared for they can be wonderful pets. I’m not at all a fan though of the uninvited, jumping, biting, egg-laying, house guests the cats often bring with them… And in this case, leave behind when they move on.
The house was supposedly professionally cleaned in the time between the tenants moving out and our moving in but within only a short time we discovered clues left behind by our uninvited house guests. Youngest Daughter stayed for just one night and took home with her a few tell-tale reminders of the visitors while I sprayed the house liberally from top to bottom and without an animal to host our unwanted guests, I found myself on the menu while I waited them out.
Before long, the house was thoroughly clean and clear but confusingly, I was still being eaten, not Hubby, or anyone else who visited, just me. It turned out that one of the local cats was visiting our shed through the broken window and leaving its own little house guests behind. Fixing the broken shed window, as you can imagine, wasn’t high on my “to-do” list, so for a quick fix I bought a piece of perspex the right size and glued it to the inside.
No more visits from the local cats, or their visitors, problem solved… That is until my flowerbeds were ready.
The fresh well levelled soil in the bed’s was apparently just calling out to the local cats and I found my flowers turned over or buried on many an occasion. I tried a few repellent treatments but the cats kept coming back, eventually the pansies grew to fill the gaps at the front of the bed’s and most of the big bulbs survived to fight another day, but as the big bulbs started to die back the pansies grew scraggily and needed replacing, the cats attacked again, very inconveniently using my flowerbeds for their convenience.
I bought some little alpine plants to replace the pansies on the front line and remembered a bag full of shells I’d collected from the beach which were sitting in the shed ready for just such an occasion. Instead of taking out the pansies completely, I moved them to fill the gaps between my alpines until they spread and the shells are spread over the soil in between.
Who knew cats didn’t like to walk on or dig up shells. They make a very pretty deterant. The alpines are settling in nicely since the digging has stopped, they’ll soon fill most of the front flowerbeds themselves, the borrowed gravel can then return to the front garden and the shells can move to the back of the bed’s ready for the bulbs to lift them when they poke through in the spring.
More from before : Going’s on in my “Garden