Place to play in the night garden
WITH the year now racing towards warmer weather – hopefully – we are all planning our gardens for spring and summer.
At the Wildlife Trust we are clearing, planting and coppicing, providing safe havens for our animals, birds and insects.
Ponds and rivers are being cleared so that fish and amphibians can thrive.
It is a bit strange that much of the wildlife we are protecting is simply there to provide dinner for creatures higher up the food chain.
take on board a lot of advice from our officers and try things out in my own garden, so that have wild areas and log piles for wildlife to inhabit throughout the colder months and into the spring.
One thing that has given me most pleasure in recent years is working on
IIa night garden so moths and other night-roaming insects have somewhere to play.
Flowers that release their scent in the evening are great for bringing life into your garden at night.
Plant lilac or purple buddleia, evening primrose and honeysuckle and you will not only have insect displays in the evening but a wonderfully sweet smell every time you open the back door.
Buddleia brings in the butterflies during the day, and the variety ‘white profusion’, with its luminous flowers, looks lovely in the moonlight. Evening primrose and honeysuckle attract insects with their distinctive smell and they are colourful during the day
The flowering sylvestris tobacco plant is a magnet for moths because of its scent. In my garden the verbena stands tall – about two feet – and attracts lots of butterflies and bees during the day and moths at night to its purple flowers.
At the moment last year’s long, hollow stems are providing shelter for insects in winter. These will provide food for birds, other insects and spiders in summer.
A good guide is the Beginner’s Top 20 on the UK Moths website (ukmoths.org.uk).
Then you can tell the difference between an elephant hawk moth, a swallow-tailed moth and a garden tiger.
Of course, if you are frightened of moths (come on, even the biggest are only a couple of inches long) you might prefer to organise your garden for daytime creepy-crawlies. To support the work of he Wildlife Trust for Lancashire, Manchester and North Merseyside text WILD09 with the amount you want to donate to 70070. To become a member of the Trust go to the websitet at www.lancswt.org.uk or call 01772 324129.
. For information about Cheshire Wildlife Trust call 01948 820728 or go to cheshirewildlifetrust. org.uk.
● Elephant Hawk Moth is active in your● night arden g