Citrus peels keep cats away from the herbs in the garden replanting-basil

Our herb gardening adventures have come full circle. When we started growing herbs for home cooking, we replanted the seedlings directly in the ground. That was back in the old house. At the time, we had mint, dill and basil growing side by side not knowing how invasive mint roots could be. The dill managed to survive but the basil died.

Learning our lesson, we started replanting herbs in troughs. But the cats made the troughs their outdoor beds and that effectively killed the herbs. So, after moving to this house, we switched back to replanting the herbs directly in the ground making sure that they were kept well apart. But the environment in the old house and here in the new house… they’re not the same. Some unknown pest ate through the leaves and the herbs were often too weak to thrive. And when they did thrive the wind and rains wreaked havoc on them. The garden here is larger, the plants get less shelter from strong winds and heavy rains, and that proved problematic.

So, finally, we’re back to planters and troughs. We have two large planters by the front door where Speedy had replanted the mint seedlings, and they are thriving. Yesterday, Speedy replanted the basil in troughs. How do we keep the cats aways from the troughs this time? Lime, baby. Lime. And kalamansi too. We grow them in abundance. I read somewhere that cats don’t like citrus. And I started noticing how the cats never seem to go near the lime and kalamansi trees especially when overripe fruits have fallen to the ground. Interesting…

So, after limes and kalamansi have been squeezed, I throw the skins around plants. Yes, just throw them directly on the soil everywhere in the garden. It works! They keep the cats away from the plants. I’ll do the same with the troughs where Speedy had replanted the basil. Lime and kalamansi peels every few days and that newly replanted basil will be thriving as healthily as the mint.


  1. maw says

    Interesting. Thanks for the tip!

    My other problem is that some of my cats are very fond of chewing the lemongrass leaves and the leaves of the other plants that I have. I only have one planter for my lemongrass and the leaves are already “trimmed” by my cats.

      • maw says

        Oh, yes. I mainly use the stalks for cooking. But sometimes, one just wants to appreciate looking at their home-grown plants flourishing. The poor lemongrass bunch (and parts of my basil) looks like it’s going to be bald in no time.

        I could be happy for my cats but after they eat the leaves, they keep on throwing up at the most inconvenient places. With the limited space I got, I’m planning to suspend the planter so the cats can’t reach them – yup, just like

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