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What You Can Do

  • Plant flowers which produce nectar and pollen and try to ensure that such flowers are available from late March through to September – queen bumblebees need nectar-rich flowers in late March when they emerge after winter so this a critical time for them. Ask your Garden Centre or local NTS Garden for ideas.
  • Create a log or stone pile in a shady place – excellent for hibernating creatures, such as toads, and great as cover for nocturnal predators such as ground and rove beetles.
  • Leave a small area of grass to grow long throughout the summer and cut back to a few inches high in winter (or leave long) – this will be excellent shelter for many species of beetle, natural predators of many garden pests. Why not also plant some wildflower plugs in this area to bring colour to the mini-meadow.
  • Have a water feature, be it a small pond, a water-filled pot or a bird bath. Make sure that creatures can get out of it as well as into it!
  • Put up a bird box and bird feeders away from the cats. While you’re at it, why not put a collar with a bell on your cat and give the birds a better chance.
  • Don’t use peat.
  • Think twice before using standard slug pellets – can you use wildlife-friendly pellets or more traditional methods, such as beer traps, which won’t be as harmful to other wildlife?
  • Build a compost heap– recycling your garden waste not only provides a home for wildlife but also saves you money!
  • Mulch it – this reduces the need for watering and feeding both plants and soil.
  • Encourage birds and beneficial insects into your garden by planting berry-producing shrubs and evergreens which supply food and good cover.