Supporting biodiversity is something we take very much to heart. Life in the soil is the first link in the food chain and it is where a healthy natural world starts. Healthy soil is teeming with life, microorganisms, worms, insects, etc. They contribute to a fertile soil which grows strong nutritious plants. They act as a food source for birds, bees, butterflies and caterpillars and all the larger wildlife that can be found in a garden.
Wildlife is under siege with bee, bird and butterfly populations reducing quickly in recent decades. We believe that we can all help wildlife by providing a welcoming habitat in our own gardens. And not only are we supplying more oxygen to the planet and more habitat for the wildlife we share it with but we are also creating a haven of activity and beauty in our own gardens for us to enjoy.
Why is it important to support biodiversity in your garden?
- Garden wildlife connects us to nature. Inviting a wide variety of plants and animals into your garden enables children and adults to observe, appreciate and understand how the natural world interacts.
- There are few other places for biodiversity to go. Very little of our land remains in a natural state, with most devoted to agriculture and other development. The role of home landscapes in providing food and habitat for wildlife is becoming increasingly essential to the continued existence of biodiversity in our country and even our planet.
- Biodiversity provides important services to us. Encouraging biodiversity in the garden can help with providing these natural and essential processes such as clean air, clean water, nutrient-rich topsoil for growing food, pollination, carbon-fixing, waste recycling.
What does wildlife need and how can you provide it?
Food. The plants in your garden provide a starting point for animal diversity. Providing the right types of plants attracts a diverse community of insects which will in turn attract other insects, birds, hedgehogs, frogs, etc promoting a balanced ecosystem. Research has shown that native plants support local insects better than plants that evolved in different places.
Water. All living things depend on water to survive. In your garden, providing a reliable source of water such as a small pond, container water garden, or a simple bird bath will support a wide range of plants and animals.
Shelter. Provide habitat for a diverse array of wildlife by supplying three levels of protection – a canopy of trees, a middle layer of shrubs, and a ground layer of herbaceous perennials. Stones, brush piles and hollow logs also provide good cover for wildlife.
Safety. Making your garden safe and fit for a variety of plants and animals means limiting your use of chemicals, fertilizers, pesticides and herbicides whose effects are multiplied as they travel up the food chain.
Download our pdf here for more information on what you can do in your garden to support wildlife