The Catmint Plant Deters Rats
This is just one of my inspirational hubs, written entirely to a search term found in Google Analytics.
It wasn't even a question. It just said "catnip plant deter rats", from which I assume that someone told someone else than planting catnip plants in their garden will, indeed, deter rats.
As a catmint plant grower, and writer, I can say here categorically that the catmint plant does indeed deter rats.
This is not because of some scent exuded by the plant, but by the fact that catnip is highly attractive to cats.
When I say "highly attractive", that is somewhat of an understatement.
Cats LOVE catnip. Not all cats, mind, but most, including large wild-cats like tigers and lions.
Catnip is the feline equivalent of cannabis, except of course, most of us are not attracted to marijuana.
The effects are similar.
Watch a cat walk up to the catnip plant in your garden. It will either notice it, or completely ignore it.
If it notices it, expect it to stop, then alternately purr and meow, roll in it, rub up against it, stretch out in it and generally act like a kitten even if it is an old cat.
Not saying that humans do that with the old waccy, but you never know!
This display of what may be considered to be [extreme] affection may go on for as long as 20 minutes, after which the cat will just get up and walk away as if nothing at all had happened.
There are no recorded cases of rats being affected by the catnip plant in the same way as cats are.
However, if you have a rat family in your yard, they will very quickly smell the cats, especially around the catnip plants.
Like mice, rats will just leave home, rather than hang around where cats are present.
So yes, it can be said that the catnip plant does indeed deter rats, but not in the way you might expect.
But I don't have a cat?
Cats are nocturnal creatures, and plenty of house cats are allowed to wander free at nighttime.
You'll have heard of a common routine as people getting ready for bed.
Cocoa drank, dog walked, cat put out, door locked, lights off.
Having a six foot high wall around your yard will not prevent those nightly visits from both domestic and stray cats.
You may never even be aware that a cat has visited, but as a catnip grower, you may think your plants look a bit flattened come the morning, and assume there must have been a wind through the night.
It wasn't a wind. It was cats.
There may at one point have been 100 cats rolling and pawing through your catmint plants through the night.
The good news is, those rats that were bothering you have left home!