City launches new publication to create wildlife-friendly gardens

ABC TV’s Gardening Australia presenter Jeremy Colby-Williams will launch the City of Greater Bendigo’s new publication, Creating Wildlife Friendly Gardens, at the Sustainable Living Festival tomorrow, Saturday March 27, at the Garden for the Future at White Hills.

The City has developed the new Creating Wildlife Friendly Gardens booklet to help residents design and plant gardens that will benefit local wildlife by providing food and shelter.

The booklet explains simple ways to create a wildlife friendly environment even when outdoor space is limited and includes advice for courtyards and even balconies.

Mayor Cr Jennifer Alden said the book was written with the region’s wonderful natural habitat in mind.

“As a ‘city in a forest’, we are so fortunate to be in the heart of Victorian Box and Ironbark country where our native flora and fauna contribute to Greater Bendigo’s unique character,” Cr Alden said.

“Creating a wildlife friendly garden is something we can all do, no matter how small or large our space is. With the right habitat features, even a courtyard or balcony can provide a home to a beautiful Marbled Gecko or a hungry New Holland Honeyeater.

“This booklet gives practical tips on how our gardens can support wildlife and become a vital refuge, particularly during times of drought.”

Top tips for designing a wildlife friendly garden

  • Layers Aim to create a mix of trees, shrubs of varying height, grasses and groundcovers. Dead trees and rocks, sticks, mulch and leaves on the ground can provide habitat for many local insects and wildlife
  • Diversity A wide variety of indigenous plants helps to provide a range of habitats, shelter and food sources for different wildlife. Aim to achieve a mixture of different plant heights, foliage densities, plant surfaces and a range of species that flower throughout the year
  • Food Plants that produce nectar, pollen, fruit, seeds, leaves and roots provide food for many of our native animals. Insects provide food for birds, lizards, frogs and mammals, which in turn are a food source for reptiles and large, carnivorous birds such as kookaburras, butcherbirds and owls
  • Host plants Some insects, such as butterflies, only lay their eggs on certain plants. If you want butterflies to visit your garden, include host plants such as Wattles (Acacia species) for, Kangaroo Grass (Themeda triandra) or Everlasting Daisies (Xerochrysum species)

Gardening Australia presenter Jeremy Colby-Williams will officially launch the new publication at the Sustainable Living Festival, sponsored by the City. Mr Colby-Williams is an internationally experienced horticultural botanist, conservationist, writer, and Director of Seed Savers Network.


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