June 13, 2010 at 3:25 am #252445
Hi all, I hope you are enjoying the lovely winter chill – much better than the high summer heat imho.
I am after some information on how to enhance habitat for insects, preferably beneficial insects. Any advice and your experience most welcome & appreciated. Cheers porgey. 😀June 13, 2010 at 3:53 am #468026kerriebMember
When I have flowering parsley it is always covered with ladybirds. The tatsoi and parsnip when flowering have a billion native bees and other beneficials. Sometimes not being a neat gardeners helps to it gives bugs somewhere to hide and hibernate. Lots of simple flowering plants is good. Oh milk thistle here gets covered with aphids early and then I get a bucketload of ladybirds breeding on them.
Since I put all my natives in I’ve noticed a huge increase in the diversity of bugs around here in the Summer.June 13, 2010 at 4:03 am #468027
Ditto to what Kerrie says…
Plant, plant and plant some more – diversity is the key, plus letting some vegies go to flower and seed. Some gardeners into sustainable practices or simply food growing can dismiss the value of “ornamentals” but my place is living proof of the benefits a good range of plants will bring, in regards to birds, insects and wildlife in general.June 13, 2010 at 4:42 am #468028
Bloody marvelous chicksters, I am doing that and will do more so thanks. The marigolds are flowering so that is a help at moment. I am also after more permanent built habitat. Some wasps like eaves to set up home in so was thinking of drilling holes in old garden timbers for ‘structural permanent habitat’. I read somewhere about this (earth Garden?) but cant find the article or photo. Any help pleease.June 13, 2010 at 4:44 am #468029sumasia2Member
they have some good perennial benefical plants at the diggersclub. I have tried a few work well. but nothing like a messing garden and plenty of natives. i always leave atleast 1 plant of each thing a grow go to flower and seed just for the bees and other insects.
philJune 13, 2010 at 5:12 am #468030
Thanks sumasia2, i actually have had quite good luck with Diggers Beneficial Insect Collection, some say to much as they are self seeding everywhere. But as mentioned I am trying to replicate the permanent nooks & crannies that some insects get hip to the groove in. 😀June 13, 2010 at 11:42 pm #468031
Porgey, now I know the specific info you are after, I can recall a magazine article too (not sure which magazine though, it was a few years ago now) showing a little habitat specially built but for more than insects – lizards as well as other little creatures…
What I saw was a scaled down version of this magnificent structrure.
I live on a few acres so can afford the let the wasps move into a few of the sheds, but dotted around I also have curled pieces of bark, clumps of twigs and logs, broken and intact terracotta pipes, rocks, and lots of little crevices an insect can hide in, and I use mulch which they like as well. I’m establishing more plants, slowly, slowly, for some to overwinter in, and have water dotted around too, as bird baths, small ponds.
You seem as though you’re on the right track… :tup:
ReeJune 14, 2010 at 1:33 am #468032
Thanks Mumchook, I cant find the mag I read it in. From memory it was an outside bookshelf next to a verandah chair were the reader did a lot of his reading. Within the bookshelf there was a section devoted to insect homes, made I think, from PVC pipe. In addition Mum has a photo she took at the Bot. gardens in Cranbourne of a structure full of short pipes of varying small sizes that could also be home for some of natures goodies.
What I am after is info on how best to create insect habitat in a limited space. Luckily I have access to an acre of land which I am running organically, so have lots of potential natural habitat, but would like info on creating “artificial” insect habitat. Info like how wide & deep the holes should be, dead end or open, curved or straight etc. I have a ton of native timber from a block clearance (the shameful excavation of 100 year old Moonahs, Coast Beard Heaths…..) that I would like to strategically & sculpturally position around the garden as habitat and incorporate in smaller gardens with limited space.
Any info / advice / experience / help most welcome. Cheers porgey. 😀June 14, 2010 at 1:52 am #468033kerriebMember
Oh I know the one you saw I read it too no idea which magazine either . I recall it had books, bamboo, the pvc, wood stacked in it all rather artisically and probably more stuff as well for the insects to make homes in. Woodpiles stacked for a while always have some pretty diverse bugs (and snakes as well if you are un/lucky depending how you look at it) in them. I imagine you could make some rather interesting ones of these from the wood you have.June 14, 2010 at 2:06 am #468034
Thinking about it I might make a permanent wood pile that will have a lot of nooks & crannies that can be called home. I was clearing out an old timber pile from a reno the other day and it was filled with skinks, a variety of insects I couldn’t identify and a few cockroachs. I will have to work something out for smaller spaces.
There were snakes when the garden was just weeds but unfortunately have not seen any for awhile. I wonder if thats why the rodent population is a bit bigger?June 14, 2010 at 3:02 am #468035AndreKeymaster
Seems like you are getting good advice already porgey.
Not that I can add much. 🙁
Great link there for the Insect Hotel. :tup:
This could be another project for my sporadic visits to my property.
I have some Land for Wildlife nesting box plans, so will now also incorporate the insect nooks.
:metal:June 14, 2010 at 6:31 am #468036
All the best in what you decide to do, porgey. :tup:
For me, spurred on by another look at my Insect Hotel photograph earlier today and the fact I had sticks, pipes, a couple of unused pallets, some cardboard rolls, bricks with round holes in them, carpet, more sticks, some thin bamboo hollow stuff, etc, all just waiting to be used – plus the beautiful warm sun today – I set to and built myself an Insect Hotel over near the macamdamia tree. It’s not quite finished yet and it may not be half as grand as the one in the UK link, but it’ll do! Already it’s been visited by a beetle so things are looking positive!
Thanks for jolting me into spending most of the day outside… 😀 :wave:June 14, 2010 at 6:34 am #468037HummerKeymaster
What a great idea.. this Insect Hotel 😀 Think I will make one too.. although there is the odd structure about the place here that resembles an Insect Hotel that has been bombed 😆June 14, 2010 at 6:41 am #468038
Mumchook, I just had a look at the Insect Hotel file – what a ripper. There was a building site the other day with lots of lonely pallets so will have to have another look and a good scrounge at the “Waste” transfer station (aka tip, dump….) for lots of materials. Thanks for that link, truely inspired. Cheers porgey. 😀June 14, 2010 at 6:56 am #468039
PS – whilst I was fussing around in the vegie garden today and moving some chooks into The Doc’s Chook Tractor to do some work for me for a few days, I noticed something move near my foot and crouched down to see it was a small frog. It seemed to be living in a pile of shadecloth and a small, very moist, tower of magazines and shiny advertising leaflets we hadn’t used when making a no-dig garden and left there and which subsequently got wet in all the recent rain.
Moral of the story is to simply put stuff out there and around and the creatures will find it and be very grateful I’m sure.
Edited to say HI to HUMBUG!! :wave:
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