Creating a Wildlife Garden
In order to create a garden that draws and sustains
wildlife, the garden must feature food sources first and
foremost. Many times by planting native plant species, you
will automatically draw wildlife who will feast upon the
berries, nuts, fruits and seeds that these plants produce.
Flowering plants are also beneficial as they help attract
birds and other creatures that use the nectar, sap or
pollen as food.
In addition to food, animals also need a water supply. The
water supply might be a natural resource such as a nearby
creek or lake, or it can be much smaller and manmade such
as setting out a birdbath or a shallow dish in the garden
for butterflies to drink from.
If you watch out your window next time it rains, don’t be
surprised to find birds or butterflies splashing about in
mud puddles. No matter the source, animals will make use of
water in any form they can find it.
Just as we do, animals need shelter. Again, plants, shrubs
and brush provide this well.
It is also nice to leave hollow logs or tree stumps
available for animals to nest in or raise young in,
protected from the elements and predators. Ground cover and
evergreens make good year-round shelter for a variety of
creatures, particularly in winter when other trees and
plants are sparse. Rock walls or mounds make good homes for
lizards, and beneficial snakes. Leaf or straw mulched areas
are an excellent spider habitat.
If you have a very small garden, you might wish to place a
roosting box in your yard to offer a home for various
creatures. Fennel or parsley plants make great homes for
In order to create an organic variety wildlife garden, it
is important that pesticides or other chemicals not be
introduced into the garden. Organic gardening not only
benefits the wildlife, keeping them safer and healthier,
but also the environment, keeping our air and water cleaner
and safer too. Instead of chemical fertilizers, organic
gardens rely upon compost, which is a natural means