HOW TO CREATE A LARGE INSECT HABITAT FROM RECYCLED AND NATURAL MATERIALS
Help our declining insect populations by creating an insect hotel from found and recycled materials. I'm using mine to screen our rubbish bins!
- drill with several different sized bits
- timber pallet
- old scrap timber
- plant pots
- paper cups (reused from a conference)
- toilet/paper towel cardboard tubes
- fabric scraps (natural materials)
- newspaper (rolled up into tight tubes)
- variety of natural materials, seed pods, pine cones, bamboo (10-15cm long) dried leaves, bark, twigs, wood chips, straw/hay, flax and grasses.
- other found objects: hose cut-offs, agi pipe, broken tiles and terracotta, plasstic tubs, straws
- chicken or aviary wire (to stop birds and critters taking bits for their nests)
Keep in mind the entrance to compartments should have different shapes and sizes. Butterflies like vertical slit shapes and green lacewings like horizontal slits, bees and wasps prefer holes 4 – 9mm in diameter and approx. 15mm deep with no sharp edges.
ADD PLANTS TO ENCOURAGE BENEFITIAL INSECTS TO PLAY IN YOUR GARDEN:
Dogbane (Plectranthus caninus) is a hardy favourite to bring pollinators and flowers almost all year around. Natives in the garden provide pollen and attract birds: Grevilleas, Callistemon, Leptospermum and Eucalypts. Create diversity by adding these flowers and herbs to your veggie garden: Calendula, Poppies, Marigold, Sunflowers, Roses, Alyssum, Cosmos, Daisy’s and Cornflower. Basil, Coriander, Chives, Onions and Leek, Catmint Bergamot, Rosemary, Lavender, Borage, Chamomile, Dill, Parsley and Thyme.
FOR MORE INFO:
Thank you to these websites for their useful information:
Permaculture good bugs and beneficial plants: http://permaculturenews.org/2014/10/04/plants-attract-beneficial-insects/
The Australasian Biological Control Association: http://www.goodbugs.org.au/. chemical toxicity / insects
Leaf, Root and Fruit have some great videos on insects including this cool one of the Hoverflies: https://m.youtube.com/watch?v=9UU5qkOPZdw