Monday, June 25, 2007


It's a new personal best!
I watered 3 cats today!

I'm not talkin' about these gorgeous Catmint bushes. I'm talking about the lazy kitties who are snoozing underneath them most every afternoon. I generally flush out one slacker while I'm sprinkling the flower beds, but three! Now that's a productive afternoon.

, part of the Nepeta family, is a mellower form of catnip. Cats dearly love the fragrance. They brush their noses against it, love to sleep underneath the taller bushes. Warning: some cats will maul a particularly fragrant bush. Thoughtless cats (like Pete) will sleep on top of smaller bushes, flattening all the blooms.

Nepeta 'Walkers Low' Catmint

So, keep the cats indoors and invest in a catmint plant or two. My Six Hills Giant Catmint (pictured at top) is into it's 3rd summer and hitting it's stride. These glorious blooms stretch 5 feet in width, 3 feet high ~ they are without a doubt a gardener's very best friend. Reliable, drought-tolerant, long-blooming, blah, blah, blah. I love them because they weed themselves. Heavy bushes drape over the weeds shielding them from sunlight so weeds can't grow.

* Ideal for hot, windy spots where blue and purple flower spikes can wave in the breeze.

Two blooming in my garden:
  • Walkers Low - More manageable size
  • Six Hills Giant - XXL
PS: I'm NOT some crazy lady with 40 cats. I'm just babysitting more cats than I'd care to right now. They hate each other but they love the catmint...!


Anonymous said...

Dear Kate,
I love your work. It's that elusive combination of amusing and practical. I'm also impressed at the variety of plants one can grow at high altitudes. Here at sea level on Vancouver Island the gardens are very forgiving. You can't help but get out there and putter in spite of the incessant rain.
Keep up the good work,
Maggie (in Nanaimo)

Anonymous said...

Dear Kate,

I just planted some six hills giant catmint in my Truckee, CA (6,500 ft elevation) yard...mixed in with some coronation gold yarrow. I hope they do as well as yours!

By the way, my cat Stoli, has the exact same coloring as your cat Pete: black with a silver undercoat. He has the same silver stole as Pete. I have not seen many cats with this coloring. What breed of cat is Pete? Not sure what Stoli is (he was a stray).

I'll let you know how my catmint does!


Kate/High Altitude Gardening said...

Thank you, Maggie that is very kind of you to say.

Gayle - Pete was a rescue cat, too, so I'm not sure what breed he is. But, he's a big guy. About 20 pounds.