Bug Hotels can take many forms from simple twigs tied together to a large five star hotel. The style and design is only limited by your imagination and can take on any form you wish!
In nature there are all sorts of nooks and crannies that insects can find to live in or under. However in our gardens it is far more difficult. Gardeners like to be tidy and clear up leaves and other debris before the onset of Winter. Putting their gardens to bed. Old perennial stems from summer flowers now long gone are cut back in the Autumn. The result is that many insects and small invertebrates find it hard to find a temporary home to overwinter.
Despite this, thousands of mini beasts make our gardens their home during the warmer months and it is heartening to know that their are only a few of them that cause our plants, fruit and vegetables harm. The rest are often those that are beneficial to the garden and help control those pesky pests.
We can help by providing a habitat for those insects to thrive in and in so doing help our plants and garden so why not have some fun and build your own bug ‘des res’.
As it is now officially spring let’s give them some thought.
Solitary bees and hover flies will help pollinate your plants and vegetables so why not build yourself a home for them.
How about finding a nice warm sunny spot by a wall or fence or at the foot of a hedge and place a small log with holes drilled in it for them. Yes it’s that simple. The end of an old lemonade bottle can be cut off and filled with twigs, hollow stems and old bamboo canes and hung off a shed or fence. The bees will find them and lay their eggs in the ends creating the next generation to delight you the following year.
Alternatively you can create a bug palace out of old pallets and really let your imagination run riot, with roof tiles to keep the rain off and fill it with all types of old plant pots, pine cones, sticks and stones. In fact more or less anything that comes to hand as long as their are nooks and crannies for the beasties to crawl into. You can draft in the kids on a weekend or during the holidays. They will love to help out and they can see who takes up residence.
Even if this doesn’t take your fancy or time is short there are plenty of options at your garden centre or local DIY store. It may not be as much fun but the insects won’t mind and your garden will love you for it.
Send me some photos if you like of what you have built and I will put them on the website for you. Go on, go crazy and see what you can dream up.