Slugs killed: 3
Plants bought: 0 (wrong time of year I guess)
Gardening magazines purchased: 1
Slugs have been on the wane here so my attention has turned to next door's cats who like to have a dump on my borders. On warm summer days I peep through the orange fence to spy on them sunning themselves on their lawn. They have a little routine for these moments: relax, have a stretch and then think, "I know, I'll go and have a crap next door." No wonder that I broke one of my mantras this week ("Claire, thou shalt not covert more gardening magazines!") when I saw this month's feature in Gardener's World: KEEP CATS OFF YOUR BORDERS. It shouted to me off the shelf. This turned out to be worth the money as there were a few things I didn't know about cat repelling, such as putting a string of wire on top of your fence. Unfortunately this isn't really suitable for a small garden unless I want it to look like Her Majesty's Holloway Prison. Sprinklers are also mentioned but this is madness for someone without a lawn. Here's my own summary of my anti cat tactics so far. All tests were conducted under controlled clinical conditions.
Lion dung: 0/10
Anti cat spray: 0/10
Lemon peel (kindly suggested by the owners of the cats next door): 0/10. Thanks for nothing.
Lavender (apparently a cat repellent): 0/10, goodness what I am doing wrong as I counted 11 lavender plants in the garden and it is only about 4 metres square. (Can you have too much lavender? A topic for another post I fear.)
Sonic cat repellent gadget: this works really well so I give it 8/10. The only thing is you have to be prepared to cash in your life insurance policy to afford the new batteries it needs all the time but it is well worth it not to have animals going to the toilet in your veg patch.
Here's one of them about to launch an attack on my perennials:
|Caught in the act|
|The look of defiance|
Apparently a water gun works well but I'd have to sit there all day like some sniper in downtown Sarajevo and people would think I was insane. Also I'd have to give up my day job in order to watch the garden effectively but then I suppose I'd then have time to grow some seeds.
On a brighter note, this gladiolus callianthus came into flower this week. I was a bit surprised as I thought all the bulbs had come up blind. A massive sycamore and some squirrels are to blame (oh dear, I can feel all the new topics welling up inside of me!). It was supposed to be part of my late flowering scheme to avoid the August gap but as only one in fifteen or twenty of them planted have flowered I guess I won't repeat them next year. Famous last words!