Planning a wildlife garden
Planning a wildlife garden may seem a daunting task at first, but you can spread the project out over a number of months or even years. Consider the amount of space you have available and if you want to use all of it for a wildlife garden, or use a small area to create a habitat for the wildlife you would like to attract. Sketch your ideas out first, marking in where you would like small trees or shrubs, and experiment with various styles and shapes of border, with curved, wavy and oval shapes providing a more natural shape. Make use of existing plants and features where possible and integrate these into your new wildlife garden.
Think about using trees, climbers or shrubs to disguise sheds or cover bare walls around the garden, these will provide cover for a wide range of wildlife. Lower level varieties of plants can then be grown in front of this backdrop to provide additional cover and food sources.
Herbaceous perennials (flowering plants which die back each winter and re-grow in the following spring), annuals, bi-annuals, are ideal for filling areas, as they attract a range of insects and also provide ground cover for birds.
Choosing your plants
You should check out your soil and growing conditions in the area you are planning your wildlife garden, as many plants require certain soil types or amounts of sun or shade. Finding plants that thrive in your soil type and conditions saves lots of additional preparation and upkeep.
As well as flowering plants, also think about using plants with lots of foliage, and also plants that are susceptible to insect attack as these then provide a valuable food source for birds and other insects.
The most economical way to purchase your plants for your wildlife garden is as seeds or bare-rooted. At Trevenson Moor Garden Centre we source the majority of plants from local suppliers, and an increasing number are grown onsite, so we are able to advise and provide you with the plants you need and offer support to ensure your wildlife garden gets off to the start it needs.