Bees and butterflies are among the wildlife that desperately needs our gardens, according to Dorset Wildlife Trust, launching The Wildlife Friendly Garden Competition 2013. Now in its fourth year, the competition, sponsored by The Gardens Group, aims to recognise the increasingly important contribution gardeners are making to the conservation of wildlife, even in the smallest spaces.
The competition is the brainchild of Dorset Wildlife Trust’s Community Conservation Officer, Joy Wallis, who said: “Gardens are very important havens for wildlife and insects especially can benefit from our planting choices. This year wewill especially be looking for gardens that are insect friendly when we judge the competition. After the awful summer we had last year, when our bees and butterflies and other insects suffered, we need more than ever to remember how important our own plot, big or small, can be in the life of an insect.”
This year’s garden categories are: Patio or Small (less than 100 square metres); Medium – Large; Large; Community or School; and Best Improved Garden for last year’s winners. Entrants are encouraged to send in photos of their wildlife features, such as a nectar-rich border, bird feeders, pond or bath, native trees, hedge and long grass area. Winners will receive a plaque and there are wildlife-friendly prizes for the runners up and for every school that enters the competition, kindly donated by The Gardens Group.
Mike Burks, Managing Director of The Gardens Group, comments: “We’re thrilled to be supporting the Wildlife Friendly Garden Competition for the fourth year running. The competition has gone from strength to strength each year and it is a pleasure discovering new gardens in the area and also seeing how previous award winners have improved their space following tips from the judges.”
The closing date for entries is 24th May and judging will take place from May to June.
For wildlife gardening ideas and to enter the competition, visit dorsetwildlifetrust.org.uk/wgc or ring 01305 264620.
Wildlife Friendly garden features could include:
- Wildlife Pond
- Bog or permanently wet area
- Bird bath
- Bird Box
- Wild flower meadow
- Long grass area
- Nectar rich flower border and bushes
- Mixed Native Hedge
- Mature native tree
- Log pile and/or substantial decaying tree stump
- Compost heap
- No-go area
- Climbing plants/trellises suitable for nesting and feeding
- Slug pellet free