Rewilding – Briefly!

When I read, so very often, suggestions that we should leave our gardens go a little wild, should allow the wildflowers (weeds!) grow in the lawn etc I feel it is a very misplaced suggestion when directed at a rural garden. There are about two miles of wild hedgerows between our garden and the beginnings of town and all around I am surrounded by farmland with boundaries of native trees and plants. In this context, the non-native plants I grow in the garden are the ones introducing biodiversity as I am growing a selection of plants which would otherwise not exist in my area. So, in my case, I will leave the wild be wild and my garden be gardened in the traditional manner.

Look at these wasps enjoying the flowers of Camellia sasanqua in mid-November, an introduced plant, a non-native, supplementing the native species and increasing biodiversity:

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9 thoughts on “Rewilding – Briefly!

  1. I totally agree Paddy! I get particularly cross when the dandelion is suggested as the main plant for early pollinators! I have self seeding Cerinthe in flower all year round and when the early bumble bees wake up they head straight for them and emerge positively drunk from them!

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    1. I restrained myself while writing as I am often annoyed by the “warriors” who trot out these thoughts without any consideration to where somebody may be gardening.

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  2. As with many of these trendy, tag-friendly, ideas I think they oversimplify things in a way which grates at the nerves of people who may be a little more ‘into’ it already. Most any gardener who consciously tends a plot of land is already far ahead the landowner who relentlessly sprays, cuts and trims a square of grass and a few geometric shrubs. If anyone has some rewilding to do I’d like it to be the neighbors who cut an acre of weed-free, overfertilized and overwatered lawn and then bag or burn whatever leaves fall or blow into their yard. Also the miles of mown highway verges irritate me as well. Just as they’re filling with a sea of waving grasses and wildflowers the mower arrives, and here in the US it’s not just a few yards off the edge, it’s often 100, 200 yards of cutting alongside the highway.
    And don’t even get me started on the ‘leave the leaves’ which I’ve been seeing all autumn.

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    1. It is something which has come up time and time again on Irish Facebook Forums – somebody asks for advice on clearing weeds from their lawn or clearing rough ground to develop a garden etc etc. Such a request will invariably bring a torrent of abuse – “why are you killing the wildflowers? What about the bees?” etc etc with no thought as to the situation of the person who posted the question at all. It quickly becomes a gang rant vilifying the poster who simply wanted some advice. It is this blind, inconsiderate and unconsidered criticism that I dislike so very much.

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  3. I totally agree. I have seen a lot of wasps this autumn. I was finally planting my sorted and saved tulips last week and at least a dozen queen wasps were hiding among them. It made planting hazardous and I put on gloves in case I annoyed them. In response to a previous comment, cerinthe is a great plant for bumblebees and flowers for ages. I have been sowing lots all over the place for the bees. Right now it is some (non native) hebes that are covered in bloom and visited by bumblebees.

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  4. Each and every rural garden is a tiny planet unto itself, teeming with all kinds of life. There is no right or wrong here, and too many rules only take away from the beauty, enjoyment and peace that our gardens provide us!

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