TRAD­ING POST

With a place to find food, wa­ter, and shel­ter in your gar­den, pol­li­na­tors and other wildlife will soon stop for a visit.

Country Gardens - - Contents -

Our roundup of wildlife-friendly prod­ucts will help you lure more but­ter­flies, birds, bees, and even toads into your gar­den to boost pol­li­na­tion, cut down on pesky in­sects, and en­liven your views.

Most gar­den­ers rel­ish the fringe ben­e­fits of healthy gar­dens—birds, but­ter­flies, and other wildlife that pol­li­nate your blooms, eat in­sects, or sim­ply en­ter­tain you with their an­tics. To draw more ac­tion to your gar­den, in­stall one or more of these feed­ers, wa­ter­ers, or abodes. Your yard will come alive in no time, and you can sit back and en­joy the show.

1 BUT­TER­FLY PUD­DLER

Hand­crafted stoneware cradling a pool of re­cy­cled glass pro­vides a spot for but­ter­flies to load up on their min­er­als. The shal­low well holds sand or rock salt along with a tea­spoon of wa­ter. Af­ter the wa­ter evaporates, but­ter­flies come for the min­er­als left be­hind. Once dis­cov­ered, this pud­dler will en­tice them to re­turn for more. But­ter­fly Pud­dler—un­com­mon Goods; un­com­mon­goods.com; 888/365-0056; $40

TIP: Place the pud­dler in a pro­tected, sunny spot.

2 NO-WASTE BIRD­SEED

Avoid weeds and sprouts un­der your bird feeder with a high-qual­ity mix of seeds and hulled nuts bound to keep the feed­ing area clean. No-waste Blend Wild Bird Food—audubon Park;

audubon­park.com

for lo­cal re­tail­ers or

ama­zon.com;

206/957-1350; $14.99 for 5-pound bag

3 TOAD HOUSE

In­vite am­phib­ian friends to linger in your gar­den, and they will re­pay your kind­ness by con­sum­ing slugs and harm­ful bugs. A ceramic sanc­tu­ary pro­vides a dark, cool place for toads to hide and es­cape the hot sun. Toad House— Ama­ranth Stoneware; ama­ranth­stoneware.com; 800/465-5444; $55.55

TIP: Toad- and frog-friendly sites need prox­im­ity to wa­ter and pro­tec­tive plants as well as nooks and cran­nies for hid­ing.

4 BUT­TER­FLY FEEDER

Place a tall but­ter­fly feeder, filled with over­ripe fruit or a spe­cial nec­tar-soaked sponge, near other blooms in the gar­den and you’ll soon draw a kalei­do­scope of flut­ter­ing vis­i­tors. But­ter­fly Feeder—gar­dener’s Sup­ply; gar­den­ers.com; 888/833-1412; $30

5 CER­TI­FIED MONARCH WAYSTA­TION

With monarch but­ter­fly pop­u­la­tions in de­cline, sup­port their sur­vival by cre­at­ing a monarch habi­tat (and set a good ex­am­ple in your neigh­bor­hood). Start with a Monarch Waysta­tion Seed Kit— which in­cludes milk­weed and other nec­tar-rich plant seeds—and ap­ply for cer­ti­fi­ca­tion, re­sult­ing in a 9×12-inch sign that des­ig­nates your but­ter­fly gar­den as a monarch waysta­tion. Monarch Waysta­tion Kit—monarch Watch Shop; shop .monar­ch­watch.org; 800/780-9986; $16. Monarch Waysta­tion Sign, $17

6 HUM­MING­BIRD FEEDER

While hum­ming­birds may only fleet­ingly ap­pre­ci­ate the stream­lined shape of this feeder, they will rel­ish the bright red color and feed­ing ports de­signed to dis­cour­age wasps. Plus, the feed­ers can be linked to cre­ate a chain (in case you have a charm of hum­mers). Re­move the red lid in win­ter to feed other birds. Cir­cle Hum­ming­bird Feeder— Ter­rain; shopter­rain.com; $28

TIPS: Di­rect sun­light can spoil the nec­tar, so hang hum­ming­bird feed­ers in a shaded lo­ca­tion, away from wind and cats. Place hum­ming­bird feed­ers near trum­pet-shape flow­ers to at­tract more birds.

7 SQUIR­REL DE­TER­RING BIRD FEED­ERS

Dis­suade squir­rels from de­vour­ing your bird­seed with a feeder de­signed for lighter vis­i­tors. A weight-ac­ti­vated perch closes to pre­vent squir­rels from help­ing them­selves. Squir­relbe-gone II Coun­try Style Wild Bird Feeder—perkypet; perkypet.com; 855/737-5973; $38

8 NAT­U­RAL BIRD­HOUSE

Made from a blend of nat­u­ral ma­te­ri­als in­clud­ing pine saw­dust and burned clay, these bird­houses pro­vide a healthy nest­ing home and will last 20 years or more. The rot­proof ma­te­rial breathes like wood, while the brown paint sheds wa­ter. Choose among eight dif­fer­ent styles for var­i­ous birds. Sch­we­gler Bird­house—kins­man Gar­den Co.; kins­man­gar­den.com; 800/733-4146; $39.95

9 DECK-MOUNTED BIRD­BATH

A heated bird­bath made of light­weight ther­mo­plas­tic will keep birds hy­drated all win­ter. This bath twists off the mount­ing plate for clean­ing, and the heater au­to­mat­i­cally turns off when tem­per­a­tures rise above 35°F. Scal­loped Deck Mount Bath— Dun­craft Wild Bird Su­per­store; dun­craft.com; 888/879-5095; $99.95

10 SUS­PENDED WA­TERER

Pro­vide your winged friends with their very own watercooler ex­pe­ri­ence. Sus­pend this vin­tagestyle wa­terer from a tree branch or shep­herd’s hook and see who comes for a sip and a lit­tle gos­sip. Ma­son Jar Wild Bird Wa­terer—perky-pet; perkypet.com; 855/737-5973; $17.95

11 BEE HOUSE

At­tract peace­ful, na­tive bees to pol­li­nate your gar­den with a stream­lined abode made from an up­cy­cled beer bot­tle, nest­ing tubes, and a wool felt hanger. Ma­son and leaf­cut­ter bees are soli­tary and do not pro­duce honey. With no hive to pro­tect, sting­ing is rare. Their pol­li­nat­ing ca­pac­ity makes them es­pe­cially at­trac­tive to gar­den­ers. Ma­son Bee Bot­tle or Leaf­cut­ter Bee Bot­tle—pot­ting Shed Cre­ations; pot­ting­shed­cre­ations.com; 800/505-7496; $30

DID YOU KNOW:

Ma­son bees: Spring bees that gather pollen from fruit trees and early bloom­ing shrubs (one ma­son bee can pol­li­nate as much as 100 hon­ey­bees)

Leaf­cut­ter bees: Sum­mer bees that pol­li­nate sum­merbloom­ing flow­ers and fruits and veg­eta­bles

12 SPRING POL­LI­NA­TOR BULB COL­LEC­TION

Plant nec­tar-rich bulbs that will at­tract ben­e­fi­cial in­sects to your gar­den next spring. This mix in­cludes mul­ti­color cro­cus (25 bulbs), bril­liant blue Mus­cari ar­me­ni­acum

(25 bulbs), ‘Pur­ple Sen­sa­tion’ al­lium (20 bulbs), and drum­stick al­lium (25 bulbs). Suit­able in Zones 3–8. Spring Pol­li­na­tor Col­lec­tion—long­field Gar­dens; long­field-gar­dens.com; 855/534-2733; $40

13 SQUIR­REL SPIN­NER

Lure squir­rels away from your bird feed­ers and pro­vide en­ter­tain­ment for the whole fam­ily (and a fun chal­lenge for squir­rels) with a weight-ac­ti­vated, spin­ning me­tal feeder at­tached to a tree, deck, or fence. See how quickly squir­rels learn to go for the bot­tom ears of corn. Squir­rel Spin­ner— Dun­craft Wild Bird Su­per­store; dun­craft.com; 888/879-5095; $49.95

WRIT­TEN BY RISA QUADE PRO­DUCED BY NICK CROW PHO­TOG­RA­PHY BY CAR­SON DOWN­ING

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