September 2021 – President’s Message


By Patti Spezzaferro

“A garden without a cat can scarcely be called a garden at all”

Beverley Nichols

Beverley Nichols, an author of over 60 books, became famous for his books on homes, gardens, and of course, cats. I wholeheartedly agree: nothing puts a smile on my face as seeing my cat, Butler, frolic in the catnip, chase squirrels, and lounge in the sun. He is my constant companion in my garden and reminds me to slow down and enjoy the view.

Be mindful of toxic chemicals in your garden. Pesticides can contaminate soil, water, turf, and other vegetation. In addition to killing insects or weeds, pesticides can be toxic to many other organisms, including pets, birds, fish, beneficial insects, and non-target plants.

As a result, organic gardening is becoming more popular as we begin to understand the impact of pesticides in our gardens. Here are three additional steps to making our gardens purr – fect for everyone.

1. Cat friendly plants

Nepeta cataria or Catnip is easily raised from seed and once established will produce self-sown seedlings. This perennial drought-tolerant plant is pretty similar to lavender but much easier to care for. An excellent companion plant to roses since both plants require full sun. Catnip sends most cats crazy, and they love it. Also popular with felines are grasses like Avena sativa to snack on. Some claim that cats eat grass to help pass fur balls along while others believe they need the fiber found in grasses for nutritional purposes such as niacin and vitamin B.

2. Cat enemy plants

Beware of plants that are poisonous to cats like lilies. Any part of this plant is dangerous to your cat. Other plants to avoid are daffodils, foxgloves, rhododendrons, and tomatoes. Click on this link for a complete list of harmful plants to cats:

3. Keep your garden wild

Cats love nature, so plant an area where grass is left to grow long and untamed. Nervous cats love to survey the garden without being seen. Create an area where your feline friend can play hide and seek and watch their confidence grow. Hope these tips will help keep your cat happy, safe, and a faithful garden companion.

Keeping you in the know

On Thursday, September 21st at 7:30 p.m., we are excited to have Huntington Rose Garden curator, Tom Carruth, speaking on The Unseen Spring in the Huntington Rose Garden at our Monthly Membership Zoom meeting; virtual invite to follow.

Peninsula Rose Society welcomes your comments or suggestions at [email protected] . That’s it now. Take good care, and don’t forget to take time to smell the roses.