The winter is a fantastic opportunity to observe wildlife in your garden. We can all do a little more to look after the birds, bees, and even smaller mammals like hedgehogs as the weather gets colder, from making sure there is food to go around to supplying shelter. In this article, we will outline the different ways you can easily transform your garden into a haven for visiting wildlife. Let’s take a look…
If you are a new gardener, you may be under the impression that very little can grow during the colder months. There is a wide range of winter planting themes that can not only help your garden appear livelier during the season but can also attract more wildlife into your space.
Mahonia’s flower in winter, offering pollen to bees that wake early before the spring. Similarly, snowdrops provide essential nectar for these early rising bees in the winter. Making sure pollinators are properly looked after will not only encourage more insects to visit your garden space, but it will also be great for the environment.
Not being too liberal with the garden shears is an effortless way to ensure that more wildlife is protected during the winter months. Keeping your borders more open and not sealing gaps in your fences will help to encourage more visiting animals in your space.
For example, more overgrown hedgerows help make them an ideal safe, secure, warm hiding spot for small animals such as hedgehogs to hibernate. Be careful when raking or clearing fallen leaves in the autumn and winter too, as hedgehogs have been known to sleep during these piles.
Not all birds migrate in the winter, and as a result, there will still be plenty of bird activity in your garden even as the temperature drops. All wild creatures feel the harsh effect of the winter, so adding food to help them out is a fantastic way to ensure your garden space remains populated by wildlife.
Adding bird feeders to your garden space will encourage an increase in visits from our feathered friends. Be careful with hanging feeders, as the pellets can attract more unwanted wildlife such as rats and other rodents. Making sure your patio, composite decking or lawn is cleared from any stray pellets is an easy preventative measure, or alternatively, invest in a table feeder.
The winter is a wonderful opportunity to allow your garden to become slightly more overgrown, instead growing a “wild garden” allowing wildflowers to flourish. It is easy to dispel wildflowers as just unsightly weeds, but certain wildflowers will help to attract more birds and insects into your space.
Keeping your garden slightly messier with piles of fallen leaves, logs, twigs, and shrubs helps to make a perfect habitat for any hibernating animals, including amphibians such as toads and frogs, and can help birds find suitable materials to build their nests with.
To conclude, the winter is a fantastic time to observe more wildlife in your garden. From planting themes that will attract insects, to making sure you look after birds and hedgehogs, there is plenty you can do to make your outdoor space a welcome haven for the local flora and fauna to flourish within.