WildscapeA discussion of wildscape can be found in different components of the total assessment. Here we are focusing on the wildscape as an abode for wildlife (at least the birds and butterflies).
When well designed, wildscape can be quite beautiful and can improve the quality of life of the landscape; it provides a link to the rural landscape, a balance of the cultivated and the wild. Like work and rest, cultivation and the wild need to coexist and are interdependent. Increased wildscape will be needed for many insects and even birds which are so hard pressed by the decrease in wilderness areas. If the labor- and resource-saving reasons are not sufficient, the provision of sanctuary for birds could be a major reason for considering more wildscape. A wildscape property will be blessed with many birds, many species of which are under heavy stress today due to destruction of winter and summer nesting and feeding areas.
Planting. Determine the area that should be in wildscape. It may be one where the color of the wildflowers will stand in contrast to other colors of the landscape. Prepare the ground for the wildscape according to local specifications. Usually it needed to be plowed and tilled with a disc harrow. Sow the seed as recommended, usually in the late summer or fall. Obtain commercially available wildflower or prairie grass seed, or possibly with seed collected from other wildscapes. Native seeds are always more ideal than imported varieties. In each subsequent year one can gather the seed produced on this particular wildscape and use it to expand the wildscape, thus keeping long-term costs low.
Bordering. One practical suggestion for increasing the popularity of wildscape is to border the first wildscapes established with brick or stone and allow those to be small enclosed flower gardens. Spectators will love it. Of course, it will take years for such a landscape to mature and will reach maximum productivity only gradually over that time. This is an investment in the future though well worth the effort.
Varieties. Variety selection depends on the region of the country, the type of soil, the amount of shade, and the initial decision to have only native plants or to include non-invasive non-natives in your wildscape. Choose varieties wisely. It may be best to experiment with some types to find out which do best in your area.
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