Cre­ate your gar­den patch from scratch

It’s the end of the year, so how did edi­tor Matt do in cre­at­ing a wildlife-friendly gar­den?

Bird Watching (UK) - - Contents - WORDS: MATT MER­RITT

Edi­tor Matt re­flects on a year of trans­form­ing his gar­den into a wildlife-friendly area

ICAN HARDLY BE­LIEVE that 2016 is al­most fin­ished, but I’ve been tak­ing stock of the suc­cesses and fail­ures of the last 12 months, and en­joy­ing a quiet sat­is­fac­tion that our lit­tle gar­den is def­i­nitely at­tract­ing more wildlife than it did a year ago. That’s en­cour­ag­ing, be­cause some of the work we’ve done will cer­tainly take much longer to re­ally bear fruit, so the early tri­umphs have given us plenty of mo­ti­va­tion to keep go­ing and re­ally cre­ate a sub­ur­ban oa­sis for na­ture.

As I write, our feed­ers are busy again, but best of all the birds that visit are start­ing to take ad­van­tage of the nat­u­ral food on of­fer. As next year goes on, we’ll be look­ing to plant more and more bird-friendly shrubs and bushes. It isn’t as if it has cost a lot, ei­ther, in terms of money or time. I reckon I’ve spent around £150 specif­i­cally on the wildlife as­pects of the gar­den, and per­haps an hour or so a week, on av­er­age – of course, there was also some more gen­eral gar­den­ing on top of that. Fi­nally, thanks to Liz Pot­ter of Gar­den An­swers, and Adrian Thomas of the RSPB, for all their in­valu­able help and ad­vice.

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