June is a month which sees hedgerows burst into life, lush with roses, elderflowers, speedwell and vetch. Take a walk in a green area, near to your house, or just have a nosy around your garden, and you will see a whole plethora of wild plants in bloom, creating a bee and butterfly food bonanza.
Young birds from this year’s broods will start to make an appearance and young fox cubs will start to venture out of the den. Hedgehogs bring their young out this month, so have a look in your garden after dusk, as you may find a family of 3 or 4 foraging for earthworms and slugs. Whilst looking for hedgehogs, also look skywards, as bats start bringing their young out from the safety of the natal roost and can be seen swooping around the garden at dusk. In your pond, tadpoles will be making the change to adult frogs and dragonflies and damselflies will be fighting and mating on the marginal vegetation. Some common species of garden birds, such as our familiar blackbird, will be starting its second brood this month, so you may just see young fledglings looking for the odd morsel on your lawn.
Tasks for June
- Provide extra food for hedgehogs: If you have the time, pick up any slugs from the garden and put them on a plate. Not only is it an organic way of reducing slug numbers but it helps foraging hedgehogs out in dry, summer spells. Never put bread out, as this is terrible for a hedgehog’s digestion. Also provide a shallow saucer of water if no water source is available in your garden. Check out our video for more tips.
- Keep feeding the birds, but make sure not to put out any whole nuts or large items as chicks can choke on them. Chop nuts first or use a feeder.
- Supply fresh water – it’s best to have a few saucers dotted around, for example some high on the bird feeder and others on the ground, so different animals can have a drink
- Lift and divide spring bulbs after your spring bulbs have gone over. If you do choose to do this, try and make sure that the bulb patch has been in the ground for 3+ years. This is good for spreading species such as wild garlic, daffodils and grape hyacinths. Once you have selected a suitable patch, dig up the bulbs, shake off the excess earth and gently separate the smaller bulbs from the larger main bulb. Replant the smaller bulbs in an area where you would like to see a splash of colour next year.
- Sow autumn flowers. This can be done straight into the ground, or in pots inside the greenhouse, patio or window box
- Cut your spring meadow at the end of the month once the plants have stopped flowering and the seeds have dropped. Make sure to remove the cuttings. Find out more about wildflower meadows here.
- Construct a bug hotel (Find out how in our video here)
- Keep your pond topped up with rainwater if you have water butts
- Plant in paving. A lot of us will be actively building in the garden this month. If you are laying a new patio then consider planting annuals in the gaps between the paving stones instead of concrete! This creates a great habitat for our mini beasts and creates a suitable wildlife corridor across your patio! Here’s our choice of paving plants to give you inspiration…Broom, dead nettle, thyme, chamomile, maiden pink, trailing lobelia, great mullen, white campion, yarrow, lady’s bedstraw, hawkweed, common toadflax, forget-me-nots, germander speedwell