Gardening for birds – a brief introduction

As gardening goes I think that there can be few greater pleasures in life than watching a variety of little feathered visitors enjoying one’s garden.

A well designed garden planted to provide little habitats and hideaways as well as plenty of berries, seeds and nectar for foods should ensure a wide variety of bird species coming to visit. Artificial feeding will also attract many birds, a simple seed bird feeder hung near a window will provide endless hours of entertainment from the sparrows, weavers, doves, finches and the like. There are also many types of bird tables available (or can be easily made at home) for seed or to put out fruit for the bulbuls, olive thrushes, barbets and the delightful mousebirds. Nectar feeders are available from garden centers if you don’t have any Cape honeysuckles or aloes in your garden. A suet feeder will be a real treat for hungry birds in the winter months.

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Always remember to include at least one bird bath, preferably one easily visible and another more tucked away for the shyer birds like robins. A small sloping rock placed in the corner of the bath will make a nice little “beach”. It’s always fun to watch all the preening and fussing as they dry off on the nearest tree!

When planting for birds remember that indigenous is key to attracting our indigenous birds. Try to plant things that will flower or fruit at different times of the year to attract many different birds. Keep a diary of the birds you see and when you see them, (many of them are not here all year). And of course, keep your bird book (or bird app) handy to identify all your new visitors!

For more information on making your garden into a bird and butterfly haven, updating what you have or a total redesign call Chris at Catscapes Landscapes for Friendly, Reliable, Efficient, Superior Horticulture. 083 225 7451