top of page

Top Tips


  • Don’t use harmful chemicals (no weedkillers or pesticides). Ensure the plants you buy have not been treated with pesticides etc. Organic plants and seeds are a safe bet.

  • Go peat-free – ideally make your own compost in a compost bin/heap, wormery etc. We also buy peat-free compost. Note: if the compost does not say it is peat-free in big letters, it will contain peat. Also watch when buying plants that these are not in peat and/or treated with pesticides – even “plants for pollinators” can fall into this category – the RHS label does not guarantee that the nursery has not used peat or pesticides.

  • To maximise your beneficial impact on the climate, have as much soil packed with plants as possible – remove as much path, gravel etc. as you can live with

Black Soil


  • Provide shelter – ground level cover and trees, hedges and shrubs 

  • Have a hole in your fence for hedgehogs etc. to travel between gardens or better still replace the fence with a hedge

  • Put away the hedge trimmers, chainsaws etc. – at least during bird nesting season (generally March to August, but be mindful of changes due to a changing climate and only do it if absolutely necessary)

  • If nature is eating your garden, then you have a successful wildlife garden! We use some non-harmful measures to keep our fruit and vegetables from being eaten, but we also take the attitude that slugs are food for toads and song thrushes etc. so sharing our food is a small price to pay! 

juv robin.jpg

Spread the Word!

  • Encourage your neighbours to join you!

  • What you do with your garden helps to set a social norm, but you could help things along by sharing photos on social media or perhaps even having an open garden day

Aerial view of house roofs in suburban neighborhood_in_mmd


  • Think in terms of ecosystems and habitats – good soil (no digging, no chemicals) and the right plants bring seeds and insects, which attract birds and mammals

  • A wildlife pond is probably the biggest impact habitat you can provide (try Kate Bradbury’s book for more about this)

  • Go in layers – have plants at all levels from the ground up, paying attention to how they work together (useful clues from nature – look at how a deciduous woodland is structured), also seasonal layers – ensuring that your wildlife garden caters throughout the year (e.g. choosing plants which flower at different times and thinking about the needs of birds, butterflies, amphibians etc at different times of the year – breeding, feeding, hibernating, different parts of the life cycle) 

Autumn Forest


  • Choosing the right plants – pick plants for pollinators (not sterile hybrids or double flower varieties), plants with berries and fruits e.g. holly, ivy, fruit trees etc. (Highly recommend Dave Goulson’s The Garden Jungle or Gardening for Bumblebees for more on this)

  • Don’t mow more than once or twice a year – let it grow – especially during the late spring/summer months – or at least don’t mow all of it – leave a patch for the grass and flowers to grow. Moths and butterflies really benefit from native grasses, as do a number of other invertebrates

  • Instead of weeds, you now have wildflowers – it’s just a change of mindset – dandelions, brambles, green alkanet are all wildflowers and are loved by bees

  • Have wild patches – let nature take over a corner of the garden, providing shelter and undisturbed patches

  • To a certain extent, the wider range of species the better – think wildflower meadow rather than monoculture lawn, but it is also good to have species in sufficient numbers – having one of each wildflower tends not to be as useful as a good-sized patch of one – the population needs to be large enough to support the species you want to attract, but bear in mind what is present in your neighbourhood – the population size can include species outside your own boundary.

  • Even a window box with wildflowers can be a wildlife garden – you do not need acres to make a difference

  • Avoid invasive, non-native species (our local woodland/riverside is filled with bamboo and Himalayan balsam, which thrive there and displace native species) 

Flower Buds

For more information about nature connection, head to Dragon Mindfulness & Nature Connection

bottom of page