It’s easy to imagine that you can’t make a difference in your own small patch, but private gardens in Britain cover an area 4.5 times bigger than all of the England’s nature reserves combined. Individual gardens may be small but they create vital wildlife corridors. Collectively we can help counteract some of the habitat losses that the country has experienced in the last 50 years. No garden is too small to matter!
Wildlife Gardening is not difficult, but it might require a shift in mindset. “Gardening” has become an activity you do TO the land, bending it to our will, with an emphasis on “tidying up” and being neat. But nature isn’t tidy, it thrives on benign neglect! This is great news for gardeners – less is more – you can put your feet up with impunity.
Of course, the best wildlife gardens are not completely neglected. They are places where informed management creates a wide variety of habitats even in a small area. It’s also vital that no actions are taken that could harm wildlife intentionally.
In reality this means:
- gardening without any chemicals (using organic methods)
- taking care of the soil by using no dig techniques (mulch liberally and don’t disturb unless planting)
- leaving plants overwinter before cutting back
- recategorising all your weeds as wildflowers (these evolved with the local fauna and meet its needs)
With this change in approach, by accepting our place as part of nature, and not trying to control it all, you will be astonished by the variety of new life that arrives in your garden!
We hope you will discover a wealth of information in these pages to help you in your wildlife gardening quest. Please follow any of the links to find out more. If you have any additional tips you would like to share, please send them to firstname.lastname@example.org.