Maintaining and improving biodiversity in your garden is extremely important. Biodiversity, or the variety of life on Earth, ensures we have important ecosystem services like food, water and fresh air. It also maintains species that may be lost forever without thoughtful management.

Creating biodiversity can be achieved in a number of fun and satisfying ways.

For larger gardens:

  • Ensure different layers of planting, from large trees, to shrubs, to grasses and herbs. This provides shelter for different fauna (1).
  • Incorporate sticks, leaf litter, rocks and logs as habitat for bees, insects and lizards (1).
  • Place nesting bird boxes away from winds, in a sheltered spot, ensuring a close overhanging branch so birds and enter and exit easily (1).
  • Netting and fencing should be wildlife-safe varieties, to ensure nothing gets tangled and trapped in your garden (2).
  • Banksia, melaleuca, acacia and macadamia are high in pollen and/or nectar, making them attractive for birds, bees and other fauna like possums (4).

For any garden:

  • Water sources attract insects, birds and bees to your area for a drink. Position away from predators on high pedestals and fences. Ensure the water is always fresh and clean. Add sticks and rocks to the shallow dish so insects can get out if they fall in (1).
  • Let some weeds flower before pulling them out, as they provide extra pollen for bees (4).
  • Opt for natural alternatives to pesticides and chemicals, so wildlife isn’t harmed if it comes in contact (2).
  • Bee-attracting plants include daisies, mint, rosemary, pineapple sage, lavender, and basil. Bees prefer yellow and blue flowers, so make sure these are in abundance (3).
  • Choose plants that will flower across all seasons, so you can attract bees all year long (3).
  • When in doubt, chose local and native plant species to accommodate the biodiversity already around you (4).
  • Bee hotels, or items with small holes, are great for attracting native bees. Make a bee hotel your next DIY project! (4).

Thank you to the following resources:

  1. https://www.abc.net.au/gardening/factsheets/backyard-biodiversity/11260610
  2. https://www.wires.org.au/wildlife-info/wildlife-factsheets/wildlife-friendly-gardens
  3. https://www.abc.net.au/gardening/factsheets/bring-in-the-bees/9440530
  4. https://blog.csiro.au/how-to-make-your-garden-native-bee-friendly/