Blogger: Adam Murray, Communications Officer

 

In the words of Mr Meatloaf 2, out of three aint bad. In other words, I am so nearly there with completing our wildlife garden that keeps everyone happy. Last weekend I referred back to the Giving Nature a Home guide that I downloaded for free here. Below you can see our progress so far in reaching that Nirvana state... 

Step 1: Grow flowering plants

I have a increasing rather than decreasing Flowers Wish List inspired by my recent trip to RSPB Strumpshaw Fen (just 20 minutes outside Norwich – have you seen the posters?).

  

Step 2: Invest in a tree or shrub

I am in a bit of a dilemma, good ol’ Mike-the-Landscaper was very generous and we now have not one but three trees in our garden, a cherry, apple and pear. I am a bit stuck about what to do with them – maybe a bit of “espaliering” is needed. RHS I need your help!

 

Step 3: Give your mower a rest

Our lawn was left to relax but now needs some TLC including edging. There is nothing more satisfying that getting a lawn edging spade, drawing out a perfect semi-circle and having some razor sharp edges. We are never going to have that traditional striped British lawn that Mrs M craves but this little bit of mossy, muddy green is still our very own. That is until the Little Chief put his small size 7s on my edges and broke them up. Next step “skip diving” for some old roof tiles to line said lawn.

 

Step 4: Make dead wood piles

Done (thanks to the guys at RSPB Minsmere) – bring on the stag beetles.

 

Step 5: Make a pond

Done – bring on the march of the frogs. Just need a bit of extra planning to make it feel like a watery haven. We are already seeing dragonflies buzz overhead like some rumbling Lancaster Bomber flyby.

 

Step 6: Feed the garden birds

Easy – and find more tips and FAQs here, especially during the winter.

 

Step 7: Build a wildlife shelter

This is not any old shelter this is a Casa del Murray wildlife shelter.

 

Step 8: Create nature corridors

So our little garden is now an oasis amongst the asphalt and high rising walls. Not only that but on one side of my garden is a 20 ft drop and the other is solid wall. So I am a little worried that hedgehogs and frogs will have to do some Mission Impossible style climbing to get into our garden. Next step – a friendly hole in the back gate.

 

Step 9: Be green when you garden

Ongoing - the battle between us and the snails continue – but I have a cunning plan so watch this space...

  

Step 10: Tell us what you have done

Done – have you enjoyed these blog posts, let me know if you have in the comments section below.

I also have my ever expanding To Do list or let's call it a Wish List – all inspired by late night trawling on the web (you should see my Pinterest boards now) or visits to our beautiful nature reserves.

 

  • More nectar rich planting
  • Build a Compost Bin
  • The Shed Project – wildlife happy? CHECK; Mrs M and I happy? CHECK; Little chief & Little Gem – hmmmm, maybe not yet! So I need to find someone who is inspired to help me create a shed that holds gardening tools, lawn mower and bikes and then on top a comfy lounging deck that the kids can use as a fort too. Any takers?

    

NEXT TIME: These are a few of my favourite things

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