Sunday, October 16, 2011

Gardening for wildlife

Amidst our vegetable gardening we continually garden for wildlife.  It's so much fun to plant and watch the critters come!  Doug Tallamy talks much about using your home space for wildlife.  It could really change the world if we all were to embrace this philosophy.  We've mentioned his book before, but if you've not read it - check it out

We put in a new well this summer and found ourselves with a nice dug up patch to fill with either more grass or natives.  Of course we chose the latter.  We also planted many plants in the surrounding grass and mulched heavily with hay.  Check out this 1000 lb bale!

The area we are converting to a pollinator/bird garden is between the house and the garage.  The house faces south below so in the summertime this area is flooded with natural light.  The sun is starting to dip low behind the garage now but that is ok since most plants are going dormant.

In a few areas we laid boxes and paper to deter some of the more persistant grasses, but mostly we mulched heavily 12-20 inches in some places. 

There's a lot of hay in this bale and yes, there are some field seeds.  Nothing worse than the grass already there and with the heavy mulching we should be just fine.  There's documention! 

The new planted area is quite large.  The area ringed with rocks is a bumblebee garden we planted this spring.  The coldframe is at the lower left of the photo and you can see the lettuce, spinach, cilantro and radishes. 

We look forward to many native plants flowering next year!  Just today we harvested  more seed to sow in this area.  A quick list of some species present: cardinal flower, joe-pye weed, blue lobelia, New York ironweed, yellow coneflower, New England aster, common milkweed, bergamot, Riddell's goldenrod, bush clover, blue vervain, compass plant, prairie dock, black-eyed susan, blazing star, purple coneflower, rosinweed, and many many more. 


  1. You have really been working - making the world better around you.

  2. When hay is harvested the seeds are ripe-you will have plenty of what ever the hay was.

  3. We do know about the seeds, but are trusting some good resources on the matter. Plus, the seeds are offering great food for the tree sparrows and dark-eyed juncos. The are in the hay ALL the time. :)


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