Keeping an indoor garden in an apartment with pets can pose several problems. Use the following tips to avoid harm to your pets and plants as well as the headaches that come from cleaning up messes that result from a curious pet:
1 – Use a Spray Formula
One of the easiest ways to keep a pet away from an indoor garden is to spray the plants with a specially-formulated spray that’s safe for the plants and emits an unpleasant odor for dogs and/or cats. These sprays are generally effective and won’t leave a scent that will bother people in the apartment. However, some dogs and cats may continue to investigate the plants despite the use of a spray.
2 – Correct the Behavior
If you’re able to watch your indoor garden, you can teach your pet to stay away with discipline. When you see your dog or cat close to the plant, shout a clear “No!” Don’t use the animal’s name. Using the animal’s name for both positive and negative circumstances can be confusing for the animal.
If the verbal command is not enough, associate it with an action that the pet doesn’t like, such as a loud noise or a mist of water. Some dogs and most cats don’t like being sprayed with water, so keep a spray bottle of clean water near your plants. Not only can you use this bottle to mist your plants, but you can spray your animals if they get too close. (Avoid their eyes and ears.)
3 – Use Cayenne Pepper
Keep your animals away from your plants with a mixture of 1 cup water to 1 teaspoon cayenne pepper. Mix thoroughly and spray the dirt around the plants (not the plants itself) with the mixture. This smell is unpleasant to both cats and dogs.
4 – Wrap Aluminium Foil around the Planters
Cats especially are not fond of the noise that aluminum foil makes when crinkled. Wrapping the planters with aluminium foil means that the animal will crinkle the foil anytime it tries to stand on the planter to sniff or eat the plants in the indoor garden. This works to keep cats away from the plants even when unsupervised, as the cat itself will activate the sound.
5 – Keep the Plants out of Reach
Although this may not keep the curious cat away, placing plants high on a window sill or shelf with access to direct light should keep it out of reach of most dogs. You can still use this method to keep the plants away from cats if you make sure there are no “stepping stones” (such as lower shelves, tables, etc.) that the cat can use to jump up to the high location.
A pet and an indoor garden can exist in harmony in an apartment if you take the proper precautions to keep the pet away from the plants. Still, just to be on the safe side, avoid keeping plants that are poisonous to pets, such as lilies, hollies, ivys and azaleas.