How to make your garden wildlife friendly
A good wildlife garden is more than
just a corner of a garden left to go wild. Whether you are creating
a new wildlife garden, or have an established one, think of it as a
natural habitat and you are the nature warden. Here are our top 10
tips for a wildlife friendly garden.
1. Plant lots of insect friendly flowers
Flowers provide pollen and nectar for bees, butterflies and
other insects all year round. Many garden plants are as good for
wildlife as wild flowers are. Flowers such as Buddleja and Lavender
are particularly loved by butterflies and bees.
2. Plant tree, shrubs and hedges
These give food and shelter to wildlife. Good small trees for
blossom and berries include rowan, crab apple and hawthorn. Ivy
provides shelter for nesting birds, plus autumn flowers for nectar,
and winter berries for birds and small mammals; moths love
3. Build a pond
Ponds are a real boost to gardens, being a watering hole for
land-living animals as well as a complete habitat for others. They
can be easy and cheap to construct, and even small ones are better
than none at all!
4. Create a dead wood pile
A dead wood pile will become home to a number of different
species, who may use it for shelter or for feeding. Frogs, small
mammals and insects will all benefit from this addition to your
Turning your garden and kitchen waster into a compost heap is
not only a great way to recycle these materials into the nutrients
your plants need, but can also provide a miniature, frost free
6. Bin the chemicals
Pesticides and herbicides are very good at killing the bad guys,
but unfortunately they also kill the good guys. Reduction in the
number of insects and bugs in your garden can have a detrimental
effect on frogs through to hedgehogs. Why not try to encourage
natural predators into your gardens instead, such as ladybirds
which love aphids.
7. Grow your own
Herbs are loved by a number of insect species, and you can use
them too! Rosemary, Chives, Thyme and Lavender are all bee
8. Provide food and water
Providing a mix of food such as peanuts, seeds, kitchen scraps
and fat balls, plus natural food such as berries and seed-heads,
will attract a wide range of birds. Food for hedgehogs can also be
left out, but remember not to feed them milk as they are lactose
intolerant. Cat and dog food, along with dried fruit and peanuts
makes a brilliant hedgehog dinner. Water left out during periods of
heat and extreme cold can be life saving.
9. Build a house….
For one of the your garden friends. Bird boxes, bat boxes,
lacewing hotels, bee nesting boxes and toad homes are all easy to
make and offer an extra sheltering area. Photo credit to Paul
10. Go wild!
Don’t feel that you have to be too tidy. Leave some areas
undisturbed, especially between March and May. Piles of leaves and
twiggy debris in a hedge bottom, or out-of-the-way corner, will
shelter frogs, mice and hedgehogs, and the seeds in dead flower
heads can be valuable food. Let a patch of grass grow longer, as
this encourages wild flowers, provides shelter for small mammals
and food for some butterfly caterpillars
The following websites contain information on how to make your
garden wildlife friendly.
Please note, we do not take any responsibility for the content
of these web sites: