I am an Urban Prepper who would much rather prepare to be comfortable for a power outage than survive the apocalypse but I'm ready for both.
When you think of home defense, your immediate thought probably jumps to items you have inside your house. However, home defense starts on the outside before a would-be intruder can even reach a point of access. Certain plants are perfect for home security and add to your landscape's aesthetics, making them the perfect way to improve home security.
One of the best plants for home defense is the puncture vine. It's a fast-growing perennial climbing vine found in the United States and grows in USDA zones 4 through 10. The puncture vine has large green leaves and white flowers with purple centers. The leaves are serrated along their edges and have sharp points on them.
The best part about this plant? It will easily climb up trees or posts if you don't want to grow yours vertically on a trellis or support system! You could also use it as ground cover if you don't mind getting poked by its pointed leaves when you walk around the yard or garden bed!
The bullhorn acacia is a fast-growing shrub that can be used as an effective deterrent against home invaders. In addition, the smell of the leaves has been shown to repel animals, including deer and elk, which may be beneficial if you have a large yard and need to keep wildlife out of it.
This plant produces sharp thorns that will deter any potential intruders. In addition, the thorns are covered in sap, making them more painful when they penetrate the skin and cause swelling or infection.
With its spiny, flat-topped shape, the ocotillo is an easy way to add a touch of desert flair to your yard. It's a cactus—but don't worry about pruning it with shears; it doesn't need much maintenance. Ocotillos are drought-tolerant and fast-growing plants that can be planted in full sun or partial shade.
If you want some color but don't want to fuss over your landscaping too much, try planting ocotillos in clusters around your home (out of reach from children and pets!). They're often sold as small starts at nurseries; just ensure you have enough room for them before buying one!
Jumping Cholla (also known as Cholla cactus) is a formidable plant for home defense. This cactus can easily puncture the skin, so it's not something you want to get in the way of. It's hard enough to deter most intruders from trying to enter your home by way of jumping over the fence or scaling it—the thorns are sharp enough to catch on clothing and snag human flesh. If you have a small yard and need protection from trespassers, Jumping Cholla is perfect for you! It also makes a great addition to any container garden that needs some serious security measures.
Devil's Club is a woody shrub native to the Pacific Northwest and can grow up to 10 feet tall. It produces beautiful white flowers in the summer, which turn into red berries that are attractive to birds and other wildlife. While it is pretty to look at, it is covered in spines that will pierce the skin and cause irritation long after the initial sting.
It grows best in full sun but will tolerate partial shade. The only problem is that Devil's Club attracts aphids, so you may want to keep an eye on it if you have an infestation of these little green bugs!
Devil's Club grows well in USDA zones 3-9.
Blackberry plants may be the perfect choice for the urban survivalist. Not only do these plants grow edible fruit, but they grow thorns that will tear up any intruder. Blackberry plants grow quickly, which may be a blessing to some and a curse to others, so be ready to trim them when necessary.
This plant is also known as the Crown of Thorns plant because it is believed to be the plant used to create the crown they put on Jesus before the crucifixion. It grows up to five feet tall, which is perfect under most ground-level windows, and blooms beautiful red flowers making it the perfect Trojan horse. As if the spikes weren't enough, the sap of this plant causes skin irritation and illness when ingested.
Commonly called the Devil's Thorn or Porcupine Tomato, this is another plant that screams don't come in. It has thick and rigid spines, but even if you don't get poked, you have to worry about the sap that produces severe skin irritation and severe illness if ingested.
The Firethorn plant is the best choice if you need some serious protection. Unlike other plants that grow barbs on their stems, the firethorn's leaves are the sharp culprits. This plant also grows poisonous berries which may come in handy in a post-apocalypse scenario. Like the blackberry plant, these plants grow quickly and can reach up to twenty feet tall which could be a benefit in some situations but will likely require regular care to keep them under control.
Home Protection That You Don't Have to Think About
Apart from the occasional trimming, these plants are something that you can plant and forget. Like most preventative measures, you will likely never know when they work, but they nonetheless give you peace of mind. Never underestimate the power of nature when it comes to protection and survival.
This content is accurate and true to the best of the author’s knowledge and is not meant to substitute for formal and individualized advice from a qualified professional.
© 2022 Arthur Thares