The majority of people are animal lovers and love to have wildlife wandering into their gardens. Whether it’s birds, hedgehogs or squirrels, we all tend to find them cute and love to see them wandering around looking for food and then heading off into the undergrowth to their nests.
There sometimes reaches a point where we’ve had enough of particular wildlife walking in and leaving what can only be described as unwanted gifts for us to clear up; while nature itself also presents us with things we don’t want growing or nesting in our beautifully maintained lawns and flower beds that we’ve spent so much time and money on, or even building nests in outbuildings.
To try and counter these pests that make us take steps to prevent all wildlife – barring birds of course – from entering our property, (we can hardly put up a big dome over the garden); here are a few top tips to keep them at bay and ensure that your garden doesn’t just look great, but that the wildlife you like to see scurrying through the dandelions and sunbathing on the lawn keep coming back:
Decoys. Homeowners with their own ponds may already be aware of this method, but it can also work to prevent insects and animals. Around a pond you tend to find birds looking to pounce upon the fish that you cherish so dearly. In order to keep them away you either install some kind of cover (which can be an eyesore), or you get yourself a model of a bird – like a heron – to stand guard around the pond and keep other birds away. The same can work with plants where you put the kind of plant that has an unpleasant taste or smell around the border of your bed to deter insects from digging further in and destroying those you’ve worked so hard on. Think of them as horticultural scarecrows if you will!
Bring Plants and Vegetables Indoors. If you find that specific plants and vegetables are always being eaten by animals or insects, it may be worth investing in a greenhouse or similar building from the likes of gardenbuildingsdirect.co.uk where you can grow them either off the ground, or behind closed doors and away from those pesky critters looking for a bite to eat.
Chemical-Free Weedkillers. A lot of modern gardeners prefer to adopt chemical-free, organic methods and that means that it can be difficult to find the kind of preventatives that will keep insects and weeds at bay. However, one household item has been proven to kill off unwanted weeds – vinegar. It works best on young weeds that are yet to grow into full-blown pests, purely because the majority of household vinegar that you would use on your food is only around 5% vinegar, watered down. That’s what makes it ideal for the garden because it is only mildly acidic – enough to kill the weed without causing extensive damage to the rest of the garden.
Grow Plants in Optimum Conditions. By growing your plants in the best conditions for them, you reduce the possibility for weeds to grow. Those that flourish in the sunlight are likely to grow to the best of their ability and therefore keep weeds away, while providing the essential nutrients they need will also make sure that nothing unwanted starts to take over the space. It’s always best to prevent weeds than to try and kill them – you always risk killing the plants you want in this instance.
Deterrents. Rabbits love anything edible growing in the garden and it can be difficult to stop their cravings for the free meal we’re putting on for them. It seems rather extreme, but often the best way of keeping them away from specific plants or vegetables is to erect a kind of fencing or mesh around them – like chicken wire – that is high enough to keep the rabbits and other animals out, but still low enough for you to gain access to your crop when you need to harvest them or tend to them.