As summer fades out, there’s plenty of wildlife gardening to be done in August, including helping house martins before their return journey to Africa.
While it’s tempting to deadhead many plants, it’s a good idea to leave some to form seedheads, providing a nutritious food source for birds. Take a look at 10 berried plants for birds.
Discover more on this, plus other wildlife gardening jobs for August, below.
Leave seedheads to form
Leave seedheads on plants such as teasels, lavender and Verbena bonariensis, as they will provide food for birds and small mammals.
Light-purple verbena flowers
Provide mud for house martins
Swifts and swallows will be making their way back to Africa this month, but house martins will stay to rear a second, or even a third brood. During dry weather, place a dish of mud in the garden that they can use to repair their nests.
A house martin collecting mud
Stop deadheading roses
Stop deadheading roses to ensure they develop hips that hungry birds can eat during the winter months. Here are some of the best roses to grow for hips.
Orange-red rose hips
Check hedges before cutting
Blackbirds and thrushes often continue nesting surprisingly late, well into August, so check your hedges for nests before cutting and wait until this season’s broods have definitely flown before you trim.
Checking a birds’ nest in a hedge is empty
Leave food and water for hedgehogs
Continue to leave out dishes of water and meat-based dog or cat food (ideally chicken flavour) for hedgehogs. The young hoglets need help fattening up before they go into hibernation in late autumn.
A hedgehog eating from a dish on a lawn