Autumn is all but over, with the rain here today I am sure that most of the leaves will now have fallen, and with that brings bare branches, dark days and bitter cold. Winter is the season I dread the most. I hate those endless dark days, when the lights in the house are permanently on. No amount of fairy lights is going to cure my Winter blues.
My remedy for this time of year is to get outside into the woods or just the garden is the best thing to do. Right now clearing the garden of fallen leaves, summer plants which have died back and give the area a good spruce. When clearing the garden, remember to leave an area untouched, for nesting animals to find shelter and food. A stack of logs, tall nettles and a pile of leaves is best.
Using all of your garden clippings, form a large bonfire, checking first, of course, for nesting hedgehogs before lighting. Why not have a mini party and get the bbq out, nope it’s not just for summer, cook some sausages and enjoy this early Winter season.
Now is also the time to think about putting out bird feeders to feed your local feathered friends throughout the dark months. Most urban areas have a thriving bird population, and by putting out fat balls or peanuts now, gives the birds a chance to discover the food source before the harsh winter sets in.
We like to use a variety of different feeding methods, fat balls, apples, nuts and even meal worms – not all birds like the same food, so it’s best to add a bit of everything. Remember to regularly check the feeders so they don’t run out of food. Repair any damage and replace if necessary. Feeders from last year can be given a good wash before hanging out to remove any chance of disease.
We love to make our own feeders, half an orange skin, filled with fat and bird seeds and hang them up in the apple tree. The boys get extremely competitive, marking off the birds that visit their own home made feeder.
For hints and tips on feeding the birds, check out this brilliant resource. Most local garden centres, DIY homestores and local hardware stores will stock a variety of bird food and feeders for all budgets.
So, how do you prepare your garden for Winter? Do you have any amazing wildlife that visits you?
This is a collaborative post.