Will It Be The Ritz Or A Travelodge?
Well, there was great excitement at our project recently when we took delivery of a couple of bug hotels. They are just gorgeous, truly the Ritz for the pollinators and beneficial insects we want to attract into our garden.
Our bug hotels will provide a safe place for insects to hibernate. We might be lucky enough to have solitary bees or wasps making a home there too.
Not only are insects invaluable in our garden, they are quite cool to have around too. Insects, bugs and minibeasts are an important source of food for other animals like birds and bats as well as predators to other insects like aphids. Pollinating insects help boost your plants while others perform the vital task of breaking down decaying material.
Yep, we love seeing them around.
Of course, you don't have to buy a bug hotel! We were lucky enough to be given ours, but we might make one or two to provide more rooms for our little friends - though they will probably be more of a Travelodge than the Ritz.
This is the best time of year to built a home for insects so they can get nicely settled in before winter.
If we are able to find a used pallet in the next few weeks we'll use that for the basic structure, but if not we will just use some of the wood we find lying around, get it into a pile then add whatever materials we find. We'll got out on the hunt for
broken plant pots
hay or straw
Using a variety of materials will attract a variety of beasties. And variety is what we want.
To help encourage all these visitors that we are now hoping will hang around, we have not been going mad with the mower or secateurs these last few months. And no, that's not because we like to have a bit of time just to sit and enjoy our garden, rather than work up a sweat and aching muscles cutting everything down. We were able to justify the lazy option by saying we were just doing our bit to help the wildlife.
You are probably aware that during lockdown, parkland and roadside verges throughout the country were not mown much and what do you know - all sorts of life has flourished there. We say, let things grow a bit wild.
If we have inspired you to make your patch, whatever its size, into a welcoming haven for little creatures we suggest you have a look at the RSPB's website where you will find simple activities that you can do at home to support your local wildlife, even if you are short on space or time.