Whereas catnip is famously identified for charming cats in a euphoric state, it additionally performs a extra discreet but equally spectacular function as a pure insect repellent. Particularly, its fragrant efficiency, which proves irresistible to cats, works wonders in retaining bugs like Japanese beetles away out of your backyard. Researchers have discovered that catnip is wealthy in a chemical compound known as nepetalactone. Remarkably, this compound is more practical at repelling bugs than DEET, which is the lively ingredient in lots of industrial insect repellents. One 2014 research suggests potential anti-fungal properties, supplying you with one more reason to contemplate this plant on your backyard (by way of Science Direct).
Whenever you plant catnip in your backyard, you are primarily putting in an natural, non-toxic pest management system. The herb repels Japanese beetles successfully, inflicting them to avoid different vegetation within the neighborhood as effectively. But, there is a flip aspect to contemplate. This robust aroma of catnip that works so effectively at deterring pests may act as a beacon for stray cats. They may wander into your backyard, drawn in by the aroma, and even begin nibbling on the leaves. Whereas some would possibly discover this charming, it may turn into problematic when you do not wish to appeal to stray animals. If this draw back is critical for you, different pest-repellent vegetation like lavender or marigolds may align extra together with your gardening objectives. These alternate options nonetheless assist maintain pests at bay however are much less more likely to appeal to the native feline inhabitants.