An alternative A-Z of gardening for wildlife, regeneration, and wilding, Part 5

An alternative A-Z of gardening for wildlife, regeneration, and wilding, Part 5

Q is for Quercus and questions – Oaks can sometimes be seen as slow-growing. This should not deter us from planting the single most species-rich tree in the country – Leave a legacy.  There are so many competing directives, trends, and answers in today's awakening of sustainability you need to keep asking questions and if all fails resort back to Jamie Blacketts' point use your common sense.

R is for rotation – The key to your kitchen garden is rotating what you grow in rows, blocks, or raised beds to maintain the nutrient levels of your soil. And then by having a continuous rotation of flowers all through the year, you help insects starting with the early bees

S is for sycamore and slugs – I say sycamore because I left the thirty-foot trunk of a sycamore tree still standing, we had to fell for the fungus, insects, and birds. The result is a nesting green woodpecker see below. Slugs cause me pain but I did find out recently that the big leopard-patterned ones are slug predators so be careful which you kill.

T is for Trees and taxus – Trees help give you more of that important edge habitat, but horizontally and vertically. They also act as natural barriers in the air trapping the flow of flies and spiders, creating feeding areas for house martins and swallows. Maximise wildlife value with berries, seeds, and nuts, e.g. hawthorns, rowans, all fruit trees, birch, beech, and hazel. Tightly clipped taxus (yew) give you cover and shelter, great for early nesting song thrushes.

More in the next blog...


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