When creating an organic, permaculture garden, it is important to consider not only your own needs but also the needs of those creatures who may be sharing the garden with you. The most natural gardens are the ones that become a haven for the local wildlife. When creating a useful and productive organic garden space, it is essential to work with, rather than against nature. That includes making sure that all the wildlife in your garden work alongside you, the gardener, to create a harmonious, naturally sustainable space. Gardener, garden, and wildlife are all part of the same ecosystem; an ecosystem that is meant to work together for a common good.
Birds, for example, help to keep down the slug and snail populations, frogs and other amphibians can also help by eating insect pests. Ladybugs and hoverflies and other such predatory insects will keep aphids and other insects under control. Many of our food crops would not grow without the aid of pollinating insects, such as bees. These are just a few examples of beneficial interactions with wildlife that can occur within a permaculture garden. Here are some things gardeners can do to increase wildlife interaction and aid biodiversity in an organic garden:
Feed the Birds:
Hang bird feeders in a tree or create a bird table filled with treats for your feathered friends. You will enjoy seeing them and they will appreciate the help, in the leaner winter months especially. You could also help birds by giving them bird boxes to nest in. It is so rewarding and heart-warming to hear and see those bald little babies in the spring.
Choose Native Plants:
By planting much of your organic garden with plants that are native to your area, you will be ensuring that the native wildlife will be happy and healthy; continuing to thrive. This is not to say that you cannot plant anything that is not native, but by predominantly planting native plants you will ensure that your garden ecosystem is natural and attractive for local wildlife.
Create a Series of Habitats:
Make sure that you have many layers to your garden – think vertically as well as horizontally and have trees under-planted with shrubs and smaller plants. Leave dead wood around and use organic, biodegradable mulch to help a variety of wildlife live happily in your organic garden.
Create a Bee Hotel:
It is possible to attract bees and other beneficial insects to your garden with the right planting, but to make sure they stay, build a ‘bee hotel’ – a habitat formed to meet their specific needs. Do an online search or check out your local library for specifics on what bee’s need in order to thrive, incorporate such into your organic garden space.
Create A Water-Habitat:
All gardens should have a garden pond or watercourse. It is easy to create one – even in the smallest of gardens. The pond should have an irregular shape and have areas of different depths suitable for a range of wildlife. But, make sure to create a ramp or slope so creatures that accidentally go in the pond can get out again.
These are just a few of the things you can do to keep the wildlife in your organic garden happy and healthy. You and your family will enjoy creating a habitat for the local wildlife, and even more-so, you’ll feel a sense of pride as you watch them live out their lives in the home you have built for them. This is a great space for learning, relaxing, and filling your life with positive, loving energy. Building a permaculture garden can provide another connection between you and your home, the earth, and all of the creatures in it.
Solid Rock Custom Homes has been remodeling and building custom homes in the Colorado Springs, Colorado area and the surrounding El Paso, Douglas and Teller counties since 1995. We would love to sit down with you to discuss or dream with you about your custom home. Please contact us at 719-494-0932 or request a consultation here. Check out some of our beautiful projects at http://www.houzz.com/pro/solid/solid-rock-custom-homes.