One effective way to keep cats away from growing plants is to cover soil patches with twigs or pine cones, as cats do not like walking on spiked surfaces. Alternatively, chickenwire can be laid around growing plants and flower beds, as this has a similar effect.
A number of scents can also be used to discourage cats from entering a garden. Citrus fruits are particularly effective, as cats do not like strong citrus smells. Scattering lemon or other citrus fruit peel over soil patches is very effective.
The scents of some plants are also enough to keep cats at bay. Lavender and rue will ensure that cats keep away from not only the plants themselves, but also the surrounding area. As a result, planting these varieties next to other plants or flowers will keep them safe from roaming cats.
An alternative option is to distract cats from problem areas or flower beds by providing them with a more desirable patch. Honeysuckle, mint, and catnip are attractive to cats. Planting a small area in a garden using these plants alone can keep the animals away from more delicate areas. Using this approach in combination with deterrents is a very successful way to keep the majority of a garden cat free.