Posted: 10/05/2014 at 23:29
First year I gardened, complete novice, spellbound with growing seedlings and obsessed with trying to do everything 'right' as per book after book, I made an idiot of myself trying to scare off neighbourhood cats. Family member has serious illness where infection could be very bad news...so I used to try everything to stop them doing their business all over the place, pottering around with latex gloves on and going demented when they sprayed on my 'best' plant successes. I didn't want the cats to get ill so I didn't use plant sprays, slug pellets and had to pull up some ornamental grasses when a neighbour's cat kept sucking and chewing the leaves and being sick all over the place and the neighbour complained. So I dug them all up and burned them. Two took to leaping over the fence and landing on my little plastic greenhouses so I had to replace the covers. They leapt over the fence and landed on my pieris 'Forest Flame', both of them, but I managed to bind the stems and they amazingly grew on well. My Lawson's Cypress all went brown at the bottom and I finally noticed the cats spraying them. I had plastic bottles with water, I had to put sticks all over the seed beds to try and put them off walking all over and burying their poo.(They do it so neatly). I put netting over things, put trellis up to stop them coming through the old iron fencing. I loved watching their antics though but was fed up with them at the same time. 2nd year I chilled out a bit but was miffed when having added a bird pole and managed to attract birds for the first time which was so lovely to watch with a coffee on an early morning...but then the cats came. I spent a couple of months feeding and watching over a young magpie which a cat attacked and tore it's eye etc. It died at the end of that summer as it could no longer fly properly. I then decided that nature is as nature is and didn't bother to fuss about them anymore. The only thing which made me cringe a little was seeing other neighbours making their gardens lovely but ushering their cats towards other people's gardens so as not to mess up their own.
You have to laugh really. There is a law unto cats who can be fascinating, cute and curious...but sometimes...!!!!