A wildlife garden can be a very fulfilling and fascinating hobby! Although many people take pleasure in watching the odd butterfly or blue tit visiting their garden, there are many who enjoy having a wildlife garden. Having a wildlife garden is a great way to make friends with nature, if you have the time and energy for it.
Take care of the birds
If you’re looking for a simple way to make your garden more appealing to birds, or just want an easy design project–a homemade bird feeder is the perfect weekend project.
Do you have squirrels that climb your trees and eat the food in your bird feeders? If so, try purchasing a squirrel-proof feeder. This type of feeder is specially designed to prevent squirrels from getting to the food.
A feeder is a great way to attract different birds and wildlife to your garden. Birds like blackbirds and thrushes will enjoy being given mealworms, while finches and sparrows seem to love Niger seeds. Remember to clean out your feeder regularly, especially during the winter months when hungry birds are desperate for food!
Creatures of the night need help too!
Even in the darkness of the night, there is plenty of activity, such as bats, owls, and rabbits.
The sweet-smelling honeysuckle and evening primrose release their scent at night, to attract buzzing bees and moths. The bats will swoop down and feed on the insects attracted by the flower, keeping our gardens free of pests. You can also make your garden a more comfortable place for bats by reducing or removing artificial lighting from your garden and around your property. Artificial lighting, such as that produced by light bulbs and lamps, can prevent bats from seeing objects in their path.
Hedgehogs are the gardener’s friends. They help control pests so you can grow your own brilliant British garden. A hedgehog will need help to come in, so make a hole for them in the hedge with a kindly neighbor, near their access point in an adjacent garden.
Building a hedgehog home is one of the easiest and most enjoyable ways to help these tiny creatures. Although they’re called “hedgehogs,” no sharp spikes are involved in their nests.
Bug hotels are great!
When you’re bored with the usual stuff, sit down in the garden and build some proper insect hotels with your kids. You don’t even need to spend money on bug hotels or be an expert; a pile of rocks, bricks, logs, twigs, and leaves will do just as well. Leave them alone for a few months and they will become home to all sorts of insects, such as beetles and spiders.
Just add water
A pond, for most animals, is the perfect place to live. So build yourself one now and see what you find. When making a pond to attract creatures of all varieties, make sure it is made water-proof. Also, remember that the entrance should be big enough so that frogs can get out easily. The pond should be filled with rainwater, so use a water butt. It’s cheap and easy to collect, and the best thing is, you can build it in a day! You can create the perfect habitat for frogs by providing them with some hiding spots, small stones and rocks to hop around on, and a source of food.
Ponds don’t need to be big to offer a lot of benefits for your backyard. For some, a small container or large tub with a wide flat edge will do just fine. But you should definitely take precautions if you set up a natural pond without guttering or concrete sides. You’ll want to place your fish pond in an area that gets a minimum of six hours of sunlight exposure and has a moderate amount of shade. Adding waterlilies will keep the water oxygenated and add to the natural beauty without the maintenance of grass or plants.
If you have a large enough property, you should consider creating more than one pond to add more diverse species to your ecosystem. A pond with shallow water will attract newts and dragonflies, but it’s better for tadpoles to have deeper water.
Help the pollinators
Having a range of nectar-rich plants in your garden will encourage native butterflies to visit, but you need to consider supplying the habitat and food sources for caterpillars that are likely to live there too. It’s best to concentrate on locally breeding species that breed in the area, perhaps the holly blue, brimstone, and orange-tip, rather than trying to attract butterflies further afield.
Butterflies and moths are fascinating creatures. Their colors, patterns, and habits make them an amazing addition to any garden. However, these insects have very specific needs when it comes to their habitat. For instance, not all butterflies will live on certain plants. Some caterpillars may only have one or two plants they feed on while others eat a wider variety of plants. A butterfly garden will attract butterflies of different sizes and colors. A daisy flower, a wild carrot flower, or a foxglove flower are found to be the most commonly used for attracting insects.
If you want to attract insects to your garden, one of the best ways to do so is by using highly pollinated flowers. By taking a planter box and planting some of your favorite Dahlias and Cosmo’s, which both have incredible scents, you can easily encourage bees and other bugs into your garden.
Create nesting spaces for birds
Birds need some form of shelter for nesting, whether that’s a tree or a hedge. Even those with their own nests can benefit from additional cover like bird boxes, especially in urban areas, to help them stay safe.
Leave a gap in your fence
Fences, ponds, and hedges can be a massive deterrent to wildlife. Make sure to maintain gaps at the base of fences, so that hedgehogs, frogs, and even local birds can move through from plot to plot. This will help link different habitats together and give wildlife an easy route to food.
Have a break from weeding
A large number of North American plants are an invaluable source of food for native moths, bees, and butterflies. Their flowers provide an important source of nectar and pollen when many other plants have finished flowering. Weeds are a nasty fact of life. But animals such as rabbits, pigeons, and herons depend on them. They provide shelter, giving the birds somewhere to nest, and food when the real thing is lacking. Stay calm, and embrace the healthy benefits of unwanted plants.