Archive for tag: Planting for wildlife

Creating a pond

Sitting in the midst of winter, thinking of summer?  Planning your pond is a bit like drawing up the plans for a new house or dreaming of the changes you would like to do to your current.  

Trees and shrubs are a valuable asset to any new pond site.  They can be used to screen undesirable views and help blend your development into the landscape.  Turn those mounds of collated earth that inevitably appear after digger work to your advantage.  Planting them up with trees and shrubs will turn them into a feature or create a setting backdrop to your new pond/development.  The trees should be native as they will look natural and attract the most wildlife.  Make sure there are plenty of:

Willow - there are several types available.  All are suited to wet ground, fast growing and great for wildlife and fish.  They attract insects which fall into the water and provide a food resource.

Alder - fast growing and suited to wetter areas.  They have pretty seeds hanging from the branches in autumn.

Rowan, Whitebeam, Crab Apple, Bird Cherry - these are all spring flowering trees with berries in autumn, creating seasonal interest and vital food for wildlife.

Birch - grows well in poorer ground and the silvery white bark adds interest.

Scots Pine - good for shelter and evergreen.

Oak, Ash, Wych Elm -  these trees will grow to large sizes so when planting, keep this in mind.

Hawthorn, Blackthorn, Guelder Rose, Hazel, Elder, Dog Rose - all of these are shrub trees and have flowers and fruit to attract birds, insects and mammal, as well as looking pretty.

Holly - evergreen shrub with berries for birds.

When planting the trees, make sure they are protected from vermin using protector tubes.  

You will undoubtedly will want to be planting up your pond to enhance the landscape and wildlife.  Emergent pond plants are valuable as they help prevent erosion to the banks of the pond and they provide natural food, snails and insects, for fish and birds such as wild duck and swallows.  There are three sections to the pond for planting: Marginal, Emergent and Sub-Merged.  

Marginal plants: Meadowsweet, Brooklime, Marsh-Marigold, Water Mint and Lesser Spearwort.

Emergent: Yellowflag, Branched Bur Reed, Reedmace, Bottle Sedge, Reed, Reed Canary Grass, Soft Rush and Amphibious Bistort.

Sub-Merged: Water Lilies, Potamogeton

Wildlife in your garden...

Brrr, it's cold outside! Winter has arrived in all its glory. The snow is here and we're all freezing. The last thing we want to do is get into our gardens so luckily there are not many gardening jobs we can do in this weather. One thing you can't forget is the wildlife. Keep topping up the feeders and checking the ice in the water bowls is cracked.  Peanuts are getting expensive and could become more of a treat than a regular occurrence in gardens this year. We have a recommended for wildlife hedging pack which consists of a mixture of Hawthorn, Hazel, Elder, Wild Pear and Cherry Plum. These hedging packs are sold in quantities of 45 or 90 but don't forget you can also buy the plants and trees individually for your own garden needs.

Remember: The cost of a few plants is less than a large bag of peanuts and these trees will grow to create natural habitats for the wildlife in your garden. Providing food, shelter and nesting sites.