Garden and Meadow rewilding

Rewilding your garden, or an area of your garden, will help promote biodiversity, promote a better environment for insects and pollinators, and improve what is already doing a great job for wildlife.

We can all make a start and a difference by freeing up a small area of our garden and allowing it to grow wild, or by sowing wildflower seeds that will attract invertebrates such as bees, butterflies, beetles and creatures to help develop the local diversity. These small areas create island hubs for the natural wildlife and enhance our suburban lives.

A few considerations:

1) Let the lawn grow, or some of it to grow wild, seed with meadow and native plants

A mix of grassland types and structure will suit different wildlife and insects. So, mow part of the grass nearest to the house, as close mown grass mimics the grazing pattern of wild ponies and this is where blackbirds and starlings like to feed. Leave other areas to grow longer or seed an area with meadow and native plants. This will need scything or cutting just a few times a year and is hugely rewarding as the sequence of flowers and seed heads changes week to week.

2) Make your garden a natural haven Avoid putting any poisons into your garden.

Ditch the pesticides, herbicides, and fungicides, even be careful about what you paint the garden shed and fence with. One of the reasons behind the massive losses of insect life in our countryside is the increasing use and effectiveness of pesticides and herbicides, not only on farmland but also in gardens.

3) Embrace the mess 

It is all about how we perceive things. Once you look at a pile of leaves as a home for a hedgehog, or a dead branch as food for beetle larvae, you will realise that ‘mess’, like beauty, is most definitely in the eye of the beholder.

4) Allow decay 

Nature loves decay. It is part of the natural cycle to return nutrients to the ground. So, create a log pile; stack shrub and plant pruning’s under the hedge to rot down and create natural ‘bug hotels. A compost heap is a glorious home to all manner of creatures.

5) Stop digging

 Every time you turn over the soil in a border it disturbs the fine balance of micro-organisms that live there, the worms, the tiny invertebrates, and the fungi. Better to use an organic mulch instead and let the worms do the work. Your garden will thrive if the soil is healthy.

6) Think like a bird 

Plant at a mix of heights for different species. For example, long tailed tits move in shorter hops from tree to tree above head height, whereas wrens and dunnocks will dash in and out of dense cover low down.

7) Build homes for insects, birds, and bats 

While your wilder garden becomes established, it is a good idea to provide man-made homes for insects, birds and bats that would typically nest in tree holes or crevices. Put up different nesting boxes in different positions on buildings and around the garden.

Rotary Becket is keen to support community groups and activities in this area, so please contact us if you would like to join in, or if you have an interest and area needing rewilding?


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