Do you actually want a cat near your garden?

Cats can actually play a vital role in ridding your garden of pests like gophers, mice and moles.

Tom Karwin, the president of the Monterey Bay Area Cactus & Succulent Society and a master gardener, plans to actively recruit a feral cat (or two) to patrol his garden.

“Feral cats are, by definition, not accustomed to contact with humans, and tend to keep their distance,” Karwin writes. “The challenge is to persuade such a cat to spend a lot of time in my garden, stay outdoors, and hunt for gophers.”

A cat could take care of many gophers, which most likely would target herbaceous plants, shrubs and trees.

Cats can patrol your garden.

Would you want a cat patrolling your garden?

Garden Cat Cons

However, gardeners also face the possibility of the cat using the garden as a litter box. There are many more articles out there about keeping cats out of the garden compared to keeping them around the garden.

Options to deter cats include chicken wire, water pistols and prickly plants. Other options include citrus scents as well as plants like lavender and pennyroyal, according to the David Suzuki Foundation.

More on Pest Prevention

Our Doug Oster wrote about keeping fall plants safe from four-legged pests here.