The problems of loss of wildlife and what can be done about it?
Litter… plastic… habitat fragmentation… illegal shooting… invasive species – these are just some of the reasons that we are losing our wildlife. And, yes, I know you can’t all magically press a switch and sort out the problem (although how great that would be!) – but we can change our local patch… and indeed our garden. Creating a wildlife garden can be easy, simple, fun and rewarding to do and best of all you’ll be helping wildlife when it needs it most! Your mental health will be a lot better for getting some fresh air when exploring the garden and the wildlife in it and if you’re a student, you’ll retain more information if you spend time outside and you’ll concentrate better!
So… Em… what is a nature garden and how do I create one? Do I need to uproot all my plants and start over? What should a nature garden contain? Fortunately, you don’t have to start over with your garden. Here are few easy ways to encourage more nature into the garden:
1. Buy a bird table with hooks for bird feeders. The great thing about bird feeders is that they are a quick, simple way to encourage a gathering of birds to your garden.
2. Make a garden space that is messy (wildlife hates clean, tidy areas!).
3. Plant native species (species that originated in the UK) rather than invasive or non-native species. You could plant lavender, rosemary, chrysanthemums, crocus, iris, buddleia and lupins. Remember, bees and some other insects, mainly see in the purple ranges and sometimes purple flowers show up best in ultraviolet.
4. Grow your own food. It’s simple (in the main) and it’s so rewarding. You will also be reducing your carbon footprints and the food will taste better, and be healthier!
5. Add a pond
6. Create a hole in the fence to allow hedgehogs – and other small mammals – to enter into your garden. You’ll be creating a nature corridor, which will reduce the effect of habitat fragmentation and if everyone on your street does it, then it will make a world of difference for wildlife.
7. Add trees, shrubs and plants with differential height. The more difference in height in the garden, the more microhabitats, which means more wildlife.
8. Add a wildflower meadow!
9. Compost – you’ll be reducing your waste to landfill and you’ll be helping to entice more birds to the garden, as well as increasing the biodiversity.