Monday, 21 September 2015

Try growing: habitat plants

One of the delights of nature is the serendipity of what turns up after you, the human, have 'done your bit'. And in fact, almost anything you put in your garden will be habitat for something or other....(with the exceptions of plastic lawn and poisons). 

Best of all, if you hate mowing and fussing around in the garden like I do, a messy garden is great for native fauna.  Fallen logs make homes for lizards, frogs, spiders, bees and other insects. Plants are used as food and shelter by birds, bees, frogs, and even mammals. Leaf mulch is broken down into soil by earthworms, fungi and other critters. And the whole cycle just goes on and on. 

Unfortunately photographing fauna is not my strong point. But here are a few shots of plants that will help attract birds, beast and insects to your garden. 
Appleberry (Billardiera scandens) is great for attracting
native bees in spring. Crimson Rosellas also eat the flowers
and fruit, though there are other species they prefer. 
The abundant flowers of Coast Beard-heath,
which bring in masses of local bee species. 

The funny-looking flowers of Brush Pepperberry (Tasmannia
). This plant, as well as having edible peppery berries,
attracts Orchard Swallowtail butterflies and a range of
fruit-eating birds.

All three of the flowering plants here - Epacris (Epacris
longifolia), Native Flax (Linum marginale) and Yellow
Buttons (Chrysocephalum apiculatum) attract birds and 
insects. Crimson Rosellas adore Epacris flowers and will
regularly visit your garden to eat them. 

The flowers of the Turpentine Tree (Syncarpia glomulifera)
will bring in all sorts of creatures, including birds, bees and
even bats. Turpentine is a large and sturdy tree, not
liable to drop branches or make too much trouble.

Finally, a spotted pardalote on a momentary pause before
dashing off again. Best photo I could manage - told

you I wasn't good at photographing fauna! But this
shot demonstrates the value of leaving fallen branches
and twigs in your garden - they can make excellent perches.

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