Although catmint does draw cats, catnip is far more alluring. 

Not all cats will be troubled by catmint; many are indifferent to it. Catmint only seems to attract cats if they are close to the plant. 

Image credit : Mohammed Alomeri

Cats who enjoy catmint frequently knock the plant to the ground with their playful antics. 

Why Do Catmint Attract Cats? 

Nepetalactone, a cat-attracting substance also present in catnip, is a constituent of catmint. 

Does catmint draw felines? 

Catmint has a small amount of nepetalactone, yet it’s enough to draw a cat’s attention as it passes. 

A cat needs to be extremely close to the plant because of the low nepetalactone concentration for it to have an effect on it. 

Cats who are interested in catmint usually roll around in the leaves instead of eating them. Fortunately, catmint is a resilient plant that can survive occasional cat attention and keep growing. 

How Is Catnip Different From Catmint? 

Although catnip and catmint both come from the same plant family, there are several significant distinctions, especially in how cats respond to the plants: 


Catmint, an ornamental plant, is often considered attractive by cats, but catnip is more appealing. Cats like catmint for its attractive flowers and playfulness, making it flat and flat. Catmint has a minty flavor and is edible and natural insect repellant. Cats prefer catnip due to its higher appeal. 

In your garden, if you have both catnip and catmint, you’ll undoubtedly notice that cats prefer the catnip and neglect the catmint. 


Image credit : okasan

These two plants are both non-toxic and okay for cats to ingest in moderation. 

How to Keep Catmint Safe Around Cats 

Here are 3 quick techniques to keep cats away from catmint: 

Positioning your catmint in an inaccessible location is the best way to keep cats away from it. A hanging basket would make a wonderful example of how catmint should be placed strategically. 

Planting catnip in a different area of the garden is another option. Because the catnip has a stronger aroma and is far more enticing to cats, It will aid in preventing cats from accessing the catmint and other garden areas. 

When planting the catmint, make a barrier to deter cats. Nepetalactone will start to discharge when you first plant catmint because the planting process may have harmed the leaves or

roots. It is a good idea to build a barrier that will keep cats away for at least the first few days because this perfume may draw them to the plant. 

It might be sufficient to just cover the plant with a cut-off plastic bottle or enclose it with chicken wire to prevent access. 

The catmint plant has the best chance if you protect it during the first few days. Cats won’t be drawn to the location as much after 4-5 days when the smell has diminished. 

Alternatives to Catmint That Don’t Draw Cats 

The lovely plants described below are wonderful substitutes for catmint. 


Image credit : beverlyks

Be cautious when choosing plants to use if you have a cat because some of those listed are hazardous and are better suited for homes without pets. 

Lavender is a lovely substitute for purple-blue catmint because it is also widely grown and has a pleasant aroma. Lavender tends to be an effective deterrent since the pungent smell keeps cats away and it is harmful to cats. 


Lupins are border plants with colorful summer blooms. They are a striking plant that comes in a wide range of colors. 

If you have cats, you shouldn’t plant this plant because it is harmful to cats. lupins 

Echinacea is a vibrant perennial that draws bees and butterflies. Although they don’t attract cats, these plants are safe for them, so you may enjoy the vibrant colors of your garden without worrying. 

blooms of echinacea 

Geraniums: These colorful, low-maintenance plants come in a variety of hues. Although they are a common plant to have in gardens, geraniums are harmful to cats. Inside a window box, geraniums 

Pennyroyal is a plant with a peppermint aroma that works well in substitute of catmint. The pungent perfume of this plant seems to deter cats.