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Wildlife gardening

My bird feeders are placed where I can enjoy watching...

I love to watch the birds feeding and playing and enjoy seeing the roses and flowers at the same time but....

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I chose a spot in front of the conservatory to create a haven for birds and roses and it is my real sunny flowery area - my herbs are also there too.  However I'm wondering if it is really the best place because my pots and borders fill very quickly with one particular weed and I think it may be coming from the seeds the birds either pick up or eat from what I put out.  For example it fills my Pierre de Ronsard container and and the border below - it is easy to pull out when there are only one or two due to its long single root - but it is prolific and very difficult to pull when it gets a hold.  Does anyone recognise it as a bird food seed?  I know I can't have everything and I expect the odd weed plus I feel the birds are safer where I can see them and they don't really seem too put out by my often constant presence.   Where do you have your feeders? 




That looks a little like French Sorrel If it is that, it is very invasive. Both my bird feeders: Sunflower Kernals and Niger Seed are germinating like crazy after the birds drop the seeds on the ground - just after I sowed a load of flower seeds; Ammus Major and Orlaya Grandiflora. I can't identify anything as don't know what my seedlings are supposed to look like.

I did some research on this last year and ALL seeds for birds are supposed to have been sterilised! Well, quite obviously they aren't.

Are you feeding the birds a mixture of seeds? I have found that each species of bird will simply discard any seed that is not to it's taste. I have less of a problem, but still a problem, just feeding 2 types of seed in separate containers.

It's certainly looks like a sorrel, but I don't know which one. I have a lot of sorrel in my front garden and it spreads like mad. I have found that the root snaps when I try to pull it out, but you can get it all out if you are careful.

I am not sure whether this is coming from the bird food though? I know mine was here before I started feeding the birds. Are you sure it's from the bird food?

Artjak is right if they don't like it they spit it out, I found when I bought a better quality mix, they spotted spitting it out everywhere.


Thank you!  Yes you are both right it is sorrel - sheep sorrel apparently - I would never have known where to start with that - I googled all sorts of descriptions including spade shaped weed with thumb - then Artjak suggested French sorrel - so I googled that and scrolled down all the varieties until the shape exactly matched sheep sorrel.  No I'm not absolutely sure about the source - only that it first appeared in the container my rose is in and still predominantly stems (excuse the pun) from there.  It does appear round about the container too but it is thick, fast and furious in the container.  It can be therapeutic for a short time, pulling each leaf and out it comes with a long clean stalk - but it soon becomes laborious because it is just so dense.  Less than a month ago I cleared the whole tub and now it is back to where it started.  My only thought with the birds is that their favourite fat ball hanger is right above it.  Maybe it was a bit of a leap in logic.  If it's not the feeders or birds then that is absolutely fine I'll keep them where they are and continue to enjoy them.  If I thought I could clear the problem then I'd have considered my options.  I have fat balls, on three hangers and two other hangers have seed mixtures in the compartments (I'm not sure what the mix is though, the details are in French so I just look at the pictures of the birds on the packet ).  Yes I have seen the birds spit the seeds but what they are and whether they germinate or not I haven't a clue.  But thank you so much for your own experiences because it has helped a lot - I shall keep the feeders where they are 

Victoria Sponge

My selfish birds only eat suet but at least that doesn't seed anywhere.

The best sunflowers I ever grew were the already shelled 'no mess' ones that got kicked off the bird table though.



Do you know I've never yet grown a sunflower - I think I'll make that a mission for this summer - It would look quite wow against a wooden bird house that I have. Assuming I can grow one that is


The best place we ever had our feeders was at the kitchen window, we cut and shaped a branch so we could wedge it between the two side walls in front of the window, there was lots of bits to hang feeders off, the birds soon got used to it so much so we could stand just inches away from the window and watch them really close up, as long as we made no sudden movements they were fine with it, word of warning though be prepared to wash your widow every couple of days, our kids loved it.... 


Lavande, Sunflowers are easy peasy



My windows did get a fair few splats when I had the feeders hanging from flower baskets at the living room windows but it was lovely sitting there watching them (the birds - not the splats).  But one day my neighbour commented that she seemed to have an awful lot of birds making a noise and a mess so I moved them round to the back of the house.  Which is better and to be fair I had increased the number of magpies who squawked loudly but couldn't feed from the feeders as they were too close to the window - so they just poo'd instead.

easy peasy Artjak? This is the so called gardener who had trouble growing!
Okay, one sunflower coming up.


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