Spring is here, and that means preparing your backyards, balconies, or porches for beautiful herb and flower gardens. At the very least, you are at least thinking about beautiful flowers and green grass, right?
If you have cats in your home, it is normal to have some confusion about what plants and flowers are safe for cats and pets. Whether you are a seasoned gardener or prefer to hire a professional, these herbs, grasses, and flowers are perfectly safe to plant around your precious feline family.
Cat Safe Herb Gardens
Mint, Basil, and all herbs in the mint family are safe for cats to consume. While your cat may not enjoy the taste, there is no need to imagine a summer without homemade mojitos and fresh tomato basil salads with mozzarella cheese.
Dill is a great way to spice up a cucumber salad, borscht, or your favorite fish dish, and it is also completely safe for cats.
Parsley is another great cat-safe herb, which can even aid in your kitties digestion. It is used as a garnish or sprinkled on top of potato or rice dishes and also a key ingredient in tabbouleh salad.
Named for its most enthusiastic fan, catnip is actually a member of the mint family. While many sleep and relaxation tea blends contain catnip to soothe and sedate us, catnip has the opposite effect on our adult feline friends (never kittens). The scent gives them a frisky burst of energy though not all cats will react. Experts believe this works by mimicking feline “happy” pheromones. However, when cats eat (rather than smell) catnip, it has an effect very similar to that of humans—they mellow and become calmer.
Garden Flowers Safe For Cats
Marigolds give off a fresh, almost minty scent and add a nice splash of color to your garden. They are completely safe for cats, and as a bonus, help deter unwanted garden pests. Like zinnias, marigold petals can also be used for culinary purposes.
Unlike other human sedative herbs that energize cats, lavender has the same tranquilizing effect for cats as it does for us. Our feline friends appreciate it’s sweet, soothing scent as well, making it an addition to your garden that everyone will love. Lavender makes a luxurious addition to a warm bath and can even help calm kitties down in stressful situations.
While your kitty may not necessarily prefer these to some of the other plants in this list, zinnias are safe for feline nibbling, and are even among the edible flower options for people. They add a nice flash of bright color to an otherwise overly green garden, and they are also known to attract butterflies and hummingbirds.
If you’re not such a hardcore gardener, Petunias (all 35 species of them) are easy to grow, come in lots of beautiful colors, and smell positively amazing.
Whether you were born with a green thumb or have others help with your backyard gardens, these plants and flowers are sure to brighten your home and keep you, and your feline companions, happy and safe.