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How your garden can help wildlife survive

As a gardener, is there something you can do to help native animal species thrive (and in some cases, survive) and create a more sustainable environment? Yes there is, and it starts right in your own backyard.

Bring nature home

In 2007, Douglas Tallamy’s book Bringing Nature Home advocated for homeowners across the United States to plant native plant species in their backyards. Why? To create safe havens for wild creatures (insects, birds and other animals), and to bridge the gap between increasingly fragmented areas of natural habitat in an era of sweeping climate change.

Create a backyard haven

Laura Thomas, owner of Hidden Habitat, helps people to create these kinds of ever-more necessary oases on their properties.

Hidden Habitat is a native plant nursery and ecological landscape company in Ontario’s Muskoka region. The nursery grows and sells plants indigenous to the region — vital species that co-evolved with the animals, insects and birds around them.

Beyond selling native plants, Laura and her crew create native plant gardens and landscapes for Hidden Habitat’s clients — exactly the kinds of wildlife havens that Douglas Tallamy describes in his book.

The importance of native plants

Laura is also an educator who cultivates knowledge about the importance of native plants to local ecosystems. She helps people understand the difference between native plants (plants that existed in regions prior to colonization) and non-native plants (plant introduced to areas from other lands).

Gardening for wildlife

We met Laura Thomas in part one of our Gardening For Wildlife series. In this second part of our series with Laura, she takes us through the differences between native and non-native plants and emphasizes their absolute necessity.

In the video, Laura shares some useful tips about what to grow to help wildlife find a safe haven in your backyard. She also shares a few plant recommendations to help you get started. 

Looking for more information about gardening for wildlife? We share some useful resources the in first part of this two-part series.

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