The Q&A Archives: is cat urine bad for trees?

Question: Hello, I just bought jasmine trees, bugambilia and and another ivy as well as a lemon tree my cat likes to urinate in them, they are planted in wooden boxes, they are about 6 ft. tall is that bad for them? would it kill them?
Thank you.

Answer: Cat urine can burn the roots of your plants. It's bad enough in the garden, but in containers it can really harm your plants. In the garden you can hose the area off, essentially leaching the salts away. In containers, the urine may be diluted some if you hose it off, but it can still remain in the soil. One way to keep cats from urinating in the soil of your containerized plants is to place a barrier between them and the soil. Chicken wire layed over the top of the soil will keep them from digging. Or, you can drive a few nails along the outsides of the wooden boxes and criss-cross fishing line between the nails and over the tops of the containers. Keep the fishing line 3-4 inches apart and the cats won't want to step in the soil for fear of getting their legs caught. Eventually they will stop trying to urinate near your plants and you can remove the fishing line or chicken wire.

Best wishes with your plants!

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