Gardens for Biodiversity

All of the living things on earth are referred to as biodiversity, and at a local scale, this includes the plants, animals and insects and microorganisms in your yard. When you take time to watch or look up close, you’ll quickly find that gardens are home to much more than your vegetables. There are easy ways for you to nurture biodiversity in your garden, especially beneficial pollinators like bats and birds, butterflies, bees, wasps and other insects. For instance you can add natural materials like compost, rocks and mulch to enhance soil habitat. Native flowers and plants are always great choices over exotic species. Edible fruit-bearing trees and shrubs provide height variation and will produce loads of delicious food. Remove any invasive plants and when possible, choose heritage and heirloom varieties of vegetables. You can also create habitat by adding a small water fountain, bird house or native pollinator hotel. Check out the City’s backyard resources for bee blocks, or learn how to build your own pollinator hotel and identify bees, moths and butterflies on the Edmonton Area Land Trust website. Even though habitat loss is a serious global threat to biodiversity, you can do your part in your yard by nurturing a garden ecosystem.

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