Many gardeners are bird lovers, and even those who aren't confirmed 'birders' enjoy watching our feathered friends in the garden throughout the bleak winter months, often with the aid of bird feeding stations. The rising price of birdseed and incidences of disease may discourage some from keeping those feeders topped up. Fortunately, there's an even better way to encourage birds to make your garden their winter home: Let your landscape do the work for you!
Ensure that your garden provides seasonal variety for birds. Seeds, fruits and nuts are essential for high-value winter food. During the nesting season in spring and summer, birds seek out protein-packed caterpillars, which are the perfect food for their young.( It takes up to 9,000 caterpillars to raise just one clutch of baby chickadees!) Providing plenty of host plants for caterpillars ensures that busy parents will find what they need in your landscape, and will encourage them to stay nearby.
Your garden is the best bird feeder that money can buy!
Photo: Patrice Bouchard