SIMPLE AND SUSTAINABLE BIRD FOOD AND FEEDERS

Roses and bird food

I love roses – I mean, really love them. I’m obsessed with the way they look and their fragrance and I love growing them in my garden.

Roses don’t always feel like the obvious choice if you are looking to plant a wildlife garden. there are some pollinator-friendly roses, but they tend to be the single blooms that allow easy access to the centre of the flower, rather than the double blooms we tend to associate with garden roses. However, roses do have their place in a wildlife garden, and here is how I use mine:

As a deterrent for predators
I hang my bird feeder above block planted, thorny roses to deter cats and it works really well. I use a bird feeder pole to hang the feeders in amongst the flowers, denying cats and foxes access from underneath or above. The birds can safely fly in and out to use the feeders, and I know that they aren’t in the path of any danger.

As a nesting spot
Birds will happily build their nest in a thorny spot – in fact, they often choose thorny plants for the protection they offer against predators. Plant roses together in a group in a quiet place, making sure you check for nests before pruning.

As a food source
Some roses (mainly the once-flowering variety) produce hips after flowering. These fruit not only look pretty on the rose, they also provide a nutritious food supply for wild birds. They will appear if you don’t deadhead the flowers after they have bloomed.

Roses for Regular FlowersRoses for HipsRoses for Wildlife
Gabriel Oak
Princess Alexandra of Kent
Queen of Sweden
Desdemona
Scarborough Fair
Tottering-by-Gently
The Lark Ascending
Morning Mist
Ballerina
The Lark Ascending
Rosa Mundi
Buttercup

Do you grow roses in your garden? I would love to see some photos.

A Love of Nature
Clare Foskett

Roses and bird food

I love roses – I mean, really love them. I’m obsessed with the way they look and their fragrance and I love growing them in

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