If you follow us on Instagramyou’ll have seen recently that we were celebrating Garden Wildlife Week! So, what is Wildlife Gardening? 

“A wildlife garden is an environment created by a gardener that serves as a sustainable haven for surrounding wildlife. Wildlife gardens contain a variety of habitats that cater to native and local plants, birds, amphibians, reptiles, insects, mammals and so on.” 
Source - Wikipedia.
Together, the 16 million gardens across the UK form an area for wildlife larger than all our National Nature Reserves together. Pretty impressive, right!? 
So how can we support our furry & feathered friends, as well as their fellow critters? There are so many ways, and they're all far less complicated than you may think. Let's cover some of them now:
1. Use your empty spaces! Fill any empty borders with shrubbery, flowers or even berry bushes. This encourages wildlife to flourish where it hasn't been able to before.

2. Introducing a small pond or water feature can be a great habitat for a huge variety of animal life, from amphibians and invertebrates to bathing garden birds.

3. Trees and hedges offer roosting and nesting sites for birds and mammals, as well as valuable shelter and cover from the elements and possible predators. 

4. Create small nesting pods for ground animals like hedgehogs. Just a small covered area with some wood chippings are the perfect place for these little critters to hibernate through the colder months, and make their home. 

5. Grow wild. Letting nature take its course will create a more attractive environment for all things wonderful and wild. You don’t have to leave your plot to develop into a small jungle – wildlife will thank you for just a small corner, border or planter.

6. Give your garden  access to easy meals - like leaving out a water source. Why not add a small feeding feature? Leaving out an easily accessible selection of nuts and seeds is great for our furry friends, and we’re sure they’d be ever so grateful.

7. Encourage bees by planting flowers they would be most attracted to. After all, bees need pollen and flowers need pollination! Yummy flowers for bees include: -Purple flowers – such as lavender, alliums, buddleja and catmint
-Single flowers (double flowers are of little use, so choose single flower dahlias rather than double flowers, for example)
-Herbs – such as thyme, sage, mint, marjoram, hyssop, chives and rosemary.

8. Insect houses give us the chance to greatly increase the number of beneficial insects in the garden by creating the correct habitat. Insect houses can be super easy to put together yourself. It’s recommended to place your insect houses in a cool area, surrounded nectar producing plants.
No matter how big or how small your garden, there is always a new way in which we can encourage nature to return to. For more ways in which you can contribute, take a look at these few posts from The Wildlife Trust and The Woodlands Trust.
Want to share your garden creations with us? Tag us on social media when posting pics of your garden! Or maybe you're after the fully immersive

Looking for some serious wildlife gardening motivation? Winchester is full of rolling countryside and fairy like forests you will become absolutely enthralled with. Book a Winchester Lodges stay today and immerse your self in our wild and wonderful surroundings.