Each year I have a list as long as my arm of all the tasks I want to complete in the garden… then suddenly it’s got to May, the list is untouched and it’s too late in the season to start doing what I intended.
This year WILL be different 🙂
My plan is to list here what I aim to do so I’m accountable… and I give you permission to kick my a** by October if you’ve not heard or seen any updates!
So, here is my plan…
Create a butterfly garden
We have a section of lawn that we planted when we moved in, mainly to give Xena (our dog) somewhere to do her business. She doesn’t really use it for much else, as she prefers to play ball in the big yard and she loves to lie down against the wall in the summer (again in the yard), so we’ve decided we’re going to cut the lawn area in half.
The section closest to the wall will become a butterfly garden. Planting will be specifically to attract butterflies and bees, and it will be cordoned off so Xena can’t damage it! I’ll add a bee hotel and put the trail camera under the hedge to focus on the areas for a few days/nights just to see what we get!
Designated nettle patch
There is a small section of waste ground that we really have done nothing with since we moved in. It’s only a small strip which also houses an ivy-covered tree stump.
It’s overgrown with nettles and thistles which cascade onto the steps. There is also a big gorgeous Rosebay Willowherb bush which we love in the summer (as do the bees!)
Last year I noticed a few caterpillars on the nettles, so I’m going to research the best type of nettle and thistle to attract more moths & butterflies. I’ll also throw in a Buddleia bush for good measure 🙂
DIY house martin nests
When we first moved in 4 years ago, we were thrilled to see 3 housemartins nests in the gables of the bungalow. However, they only bred successfully in that first year. The house sparrows have taken over the nests each year – even though there are 6 other nest boxes available for them! – forcing the house martins to look elsewhere. This year we are going to knock down what remains of the nests and put up our own creations.
We’re going to follow this guide from the RSPB as we have LOTS of old footballs lying around that we can use! We’ll also hang sparrow deterrents from them when we put them up.
Vegetable + wildflower patch
Last year we successfully grew a wildflower patch down the side of our front yard – we’re going to do the same this year but in a bit more of an orderly fashion.
One half of the area will be raised beds where we will grow vegetables, salad and herbs (we used to have an allotment back home and loved it!) There is nothing better than the taste of fresh home-grown veg 🙂 The second half of the area will be a mix of bedding plants, wild flowers and the hydrangea bushes that are being moved from the other end.
So, that’s what my intentions are for this year. It might appear that I have moved more towards bees & butterflies than birds, but I will still be feeding the birds daily, and putting up new feeding sites around the garden.
I’m also in 2 minds as to whether to invest in a camera with a proper zoom (the Nikon P1000 is a distant dream of mine!) The buzzard is around almost daily and likes to hang around in a tree at the bottom end of the field out back – the camera I use at the moment gives me the below zoom and I’m finding it so frustrating that I can’t get any decent shots!
So I just might save up & treat myself… watch this space 🙂
Do you have any plans for attracting more wildlife into your garden this year? If so, please leave a comment as I’d love to hear what they are!