Tips On Creating The Perfect Wildlife Garden
Wildlife gardens can be seen in a negative light by some people. While some may picture a messy, unsightly garden full of unkempt shrubbery and weeds, we're here to tell you that this doesn't have to be the case! Wildlife gardens can be one of the most beautiful styles of garden there are while being a great benefit to the local environment.
Each type of land is home to beautiful flowers and wildlife that you take inspiration from. When planning a wildlife garden, it's a great idea to start with a visit to your local country paths and parks.
Whether it's woodland walks, a coastal path or grasslands, it can give you a good idea of what native species of flower and wildlife live in your area, allowing you to plan your garden around the local environment and its inhabitants.
Making a home for the local birds
Birds need a few things before they decide they want to visit a garden; food, water, shelter and a possible nesting site. There is a range of plants that can be grown, which make excellent food sources while being attractive options for including in your garden.
- Mountain ash (Rowan) provide an abundance of berries in the autumn which birds love
- Dog woods, pheasant berry, viburnum and cotoneasters also grow a range of berries
- Perennials flowers, such as sunflowers, offer seeds
Different birds feed in different ways, and this is why it's important to provide multiple levels of feeding area to attract the broadest range. Robins, for example, will scavenge on the ground looking for worms, grubs and insects while finches and other seed-eaters will be in amongst your perennials. Some birds, such as woodpeckers, even prefer to stay in the treetops.
Along with birds, there are plenty of other species you can attract to your garden.
Butterflies are, unfortunately, no longer as common as they once were. So if you're looking to attract them to your garden, there are several plants which can help:
- Buddleia (Butterfly Bush)
These plants not only provide butterflies with food but make a beautiful addition to a garden, with stunning flowers once bloomed and, in some cases, a pleasant fragrance throughout the summer.
Another poor creature that's been having troubles in the previous years are bees. While you may be nervous of bees, they are gentle creatures that only sting when provoked and can help pollinate your garden.
Some of the plants that bees will love include:
So if you're looking to entice the little creatures, add one or two to your planting arrangement.
Creating a pond in your garden is always guaranteed to attract a fair amount of wildlife. They make a lovely home for frogs, toads and newts as well as attract several beautiful insects, such as dragonflies and damselflies.
They also make a great water source for other animals and birds to op into for a drink.
- Slow Worms
All of the above can be enticed into your garden with the simple addition of a log pile. Find a shaded spot, stack the logs and let the moss grow.
Weeding and trimming
Weeding is a chore that not many people enjoy. So you'll be happy to know that they can be left alone unless they causing a problem and start to take over. Some weeds have beautiful plants that grow with them while providing food for wildlife.
Another design feature to think about for your garden is the creation of plenty of shelter for wildlife. This helps them to stay safe from predators and so makes them easier to attract. Trees and dense shrubs are ideal for this. A top tip for this is to try to use natural curves instead of straight lines, and don't manicure your plants.
Insect hotels are exactly what they sound like, places for the local insects to come and nest in the winter, hibernate in the summer and then emerge from in the spring to help keep pests away and attract birds.
It's a win-win situation.
Maintaining your wildlife garden is a little easier when compared to other styles. Shrubs only require pruning once or twice every year, and perennials just need to be tidied in the spring. This helps free up some of your time while the garden is left to grow naturally.
So there you have it, some tricks and top for creating the perfect wildlife-friendly garden. However, if you need further guidance or a hand with all the landscaping work involved, give us a call.