Rats find these 5 plants 'repulsive' so grow them to keep the rodents at bay

A big cluster of large, majestic bright yellow Marigold flowers in full bloom. Tagetes. Asteraceae family.
-Credit:(Image: Getty)


Rats are known to hoard food underground and burrow, causing damage to plants by digging them up and destroying their root systems. Rat droppings and urine can contaminate your soil and potentially spread disease.

While some gardeners resort to traps and poisons to eliminate these pests, this can also harm other wildlife. However, according to pest control experts at Pure Pest, certain plants can effectively deter rats.

They stated: "It turns out that a few special plants, nature's own guardians, can help keep these rodents at bay," reports the Express.

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1. Lavender.

Lavender is often praised for its beauty and therapeutic properties. However, the scent that is calming to humans and attractive to pollinators like bees and butterflies, has a completely different effect on rodents.

Rats, with their heightened sense of smell, find the intense aroma of lavender "quite overpowering".

While the plant attracts beneficial pollinators with its visual appeal, it simultaneously "warns off potential pests" like rats.

2. Mint.

Mint possesses an incredibly strong aroma. The potency of mint's scent is "overwhelming" for rats, who have a keen sense of smell.

The scent from the menthol and other compounds in mint acts as a "natural deterrent that drives them away for good from spaces where this herb thrives".

What's more, mint spreads, often covering large areas once it takes root. This means not only does it release its deterrent aroma from a single point, but it also "creates a fragrant barrier, making large sections of your garden less appealing" to rats.

3. Marigold.

Marigolds possess a distinctive, somewhat pungent aroma. To the human nose, it might be sharp, even a tad musky.

Rats, known for their acute sense of smell, find this odour rather "disagreeable".

The experts explained: "It's as if the marigold, in its own subtle way, sends out a fragrant caution tape, warning rats of the territory they're about to tread on. The message is clear that this might not be the best place for you."

The magic of marigolds doesn't end there as these blossoms have a reputation for "repelling various insect pests".

4. Catnip.

Beyond its reputation as a cat enticer, catnip has a valuable role in the garden, particularly in rodent management. The very scent that "intoxicates cats acts as a deterrent to rats".

To these small rodents, "the strong aroma of catnip is repulsive", making them "think twice" before venturing near areas where this herb thrives.

5. Camphor plant.

This strong scent of a camphor plant is far from therapeutic. Areas dominated by the camphor smell "become no-go zones for these rodents".

It's as if the tree has its own built-in rodent-repellent system, warding off potential burrowers and nibblers with just its natural fragrance. However, like marigolds, the deterrent properties of the camphor plant aren't limited to just rats.

Many insects, too, find the camphor aroma "uninviting".