May 25, 2022
Welcoming wildlife to your garden
By Gail Pope
Journalism Intern, Landscape Ontario

Gardens can be a beautiful view, with vibrant colours and pretty arrangements. However, if you’re looking for more wildlife to take a stop by your area, here are some tips.

Plant flowers that attract pollinators

This may seem a bit obvious, but there are many flowers that bees find less appealing to pollinate. Sunflowers are great because their height makes it easy for bees to find them. Not only will they help all the plants in your garden, but you will be able to help bee populations grow. Whereas flowers like dahlias have a much lighter scent. Lighter scents do not attract bees nearly as well.

Why are bees a positive part of a garden? Bees are known for their strong pollination abilities. Without bees, plants and trees that offer food and shelter for various species across the ecosystem would not grow.

butterfly house

Build a butterfly house

Butterflies often come to pollinate flowers and lay their eggs. Building a butterfly house acts as an extra protection for eggs against different predators and weather conditions. There are many tutorials available online to build your own butterfly house and ones available for sale.

Why are butterflies a positive part of a garden? Butterflies are an important part of a garden since they are able to pollinate plants. They also act as an indicator to how the ecosystem is doing. More butterflies present is a proven indicator of a garden’s prosperity.


Plant a tree or add a bird feeder

If you love to do some bird watching, trees are a natural choice. Birds build their nests each year in the spring and stay until at least the winter. Some stay all year long! Trees are a great home for many important insects, and fruit trees attract more pollinators.

The only downside is the time trees take to grow. The average tree takes at least five to ten years to grow enough for wildlife to call it home. Consider adding a bird feeder to your yard as a quick alternative.

Birds are a great help to a garden’s ecosystem. Insect populations can easily get overpopulated without predators. Large amounts of mosquitoes, earthworms and spiders can overwhelm and kill plants.

Incorporate water features

A small pond is a wildlife magnet. Dragonflies love the water along with other species like frogs and toads. However, ponds need to be carefully designed to prevent harming small wildlife and/or children. Too deep of a pond can result in drowning accidents. But, if done properly, a pond can be a great addition to your garden. Fountains and bird baths can also offer a quick drink to thirsty bees, or a spot for birds to splash.

Why are frogs positive? Frogs are the king of insect eating. In one night, a frog can eat over 100 bugs! Frogs also scare away annoying pests like slugs and are a fan favourite for children.