In recent decades, due to land development for housing and infrastructure in Ireland, nature has been somewhat ‘squeezed out’… but the good news is that you can do something about this as your garden, big, small or urban – is a huge potential habitat and refuge for Ireland’s precious wildlife.
In this post we will share with you some ways you can help biodiversity by making small tweaks in your garden and welcome nature!
Inviting bees, butterflies, and birds to your garden!
Do you know that there are many plants that will act as magnets attracting insects and birds to you garden?
Dandelion is the most important plant for insects in early spring.
From mid-March until mid-May it provides vital food for bees and other early-flying insects such as butterflies (on this other post we give you more detail on a clever tip to get butterflies insects visit your garden).
Also, its seed is the favourite treat for bird species such as Goldfinch and Greenfinch.
To help this, try to reduce the number of times you cut your lawn during the spring & summer, or leave patches of grass with dandelions where you can!
You can plant a willow tree, which is a wonderful tree for bees because it provides them with lots of nutritious pollen in its tiny flowers in early spring.
Make your garden a “restaurant” for birds!
Hang bird feeders within view of a window –so that you can truly enjoy observing birds who visit your garden.
Keep their food fresh, keep out of reach of cats, and keeping bird feeders or tables clean!
What about the menu? Birds love peanuts, seed mixes, sunflower seeds, and coconut.
And don’t forget about drinks!
Living in such a rainy country, we often overlook the importance of supplying a water source for birds in our garden, but in dry or cold weather conditions, making a bird bath can have a huge positive impact for local birds because it offers both: a drinking water plate and a bathing area.
Making habitats from dry stone walls and rockeries.
Stone walls are a common sight throughout Ireland’s landscape!
In some gardens, dry stone walls may feature, especially in the west of the country, and can form their own micro-habitats for nature.
The cavities are home to myriad insects and also offer nesting sites for cavity-nesting solitary bees.
Also, a stone wall may also form the perfect habitat for the Common Viviparous Lizard which is our only native reptile. This rare creature likes to bask on rocks and will hunt for insects among the stones.
Worth noting that the crevices and nooks between the stones offer growing space for ferns and a variety of mosses and lichens, which are an often forgotten component of our garden.
If you have a smaller urban garden, you can easily collect stones to create a rockery to encourage a biodiversity of insects.
We hope you enjoyed these 3 simple ways to add biodiversity to your garden and we recommend you stay tuned because we will be providing more tips on our blog on how to make an eco-friendly garden.