Wildlife Garden: Checklist for September

January 8th, 2013 BY Marina Hanes | No Comments

When you have a wildlife garden, there are some tasks you should complete during the month of September. For instance, you need to mow the meadow/wildflower lawn, harvest any remaining fruit, plant evergreens, clear annual flower beds and collect seeds. Taking the time out to complete these tasks is beneficial so that the garden will be just as beautiful and fruitful as this last year.

Mowing the Meadow/Wildflower Garden

If you have let your meadow uncut so that flowering species would have a chance to develop, it’s now time to mow it down. You can use a rotary mower, heavy duty strimmer or a hand scythe. Just make sure that you keep 8 cm of stubble. After you have mowed, leave the cuttings on the grounds so that insects can return to the earth. Then you can rake it all up and put it in your compost.

Harvesting Fruit

This is the time to harvest many fruits and vegetables such as plums and pears. Although you might be tempted to harvest everything, leave at least half of the fruit for your local wildlife. Juicy pears and plums will attract butterflies. Also, store some of your harvest so you have it during the winter for family meals.

Plant Evergreens

Plant some useful evergreens such as the cotoneaster, firethorn, holly, Oregon grape, Scots pine, viburnum or yew. These evergreens either produce fruit or flowers for nectar, and all evergreens make safe nesting areas for birds, squirrels, etc.

Clear Annual Flower Beds

Getting rid of dead annual flowers makes room for other plants. If you have sunflowers, which produce seeds, remove the seeds and create your own bird feeder. This will ensure that your flower bed is cleared and the birds are happy too.

Collect Seeds

Now is the time to snip off entire seedheads and store them for next year. You can also collect seeds from perennials. Some flowers for seed collection include the corncockle, evening primrose, larkspur, night-scented stock, poppy, teasel and sunflower.

These simple tasks can help you get ready for next year, so you can support your local wildlife and also reap the benefits.

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