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article imageGuelph's Gosling Gardens brings nature into the garden Special

By Bob Gordon     Apr 17, 2010 in Lifestyle
Guelph - The University of Guelph's Arboretum includes a small section known as the Gosling Wildlife Gardens. The five gardens illustrate various aspects of urban and suburban gardening.
One element contrasts two typically sized suburban backyards.One features the common elements of a closely cropped lawn and flowerbeds. The second is more natural, designed to attract wildlife. Five specific features of the backyard pictured to the left are unlike the overwhelming majority of backyards and specifically directed toward attracting wildlife.
The flowerbeds are designed to attract beautiful hummingbirds and indispensable pollinators such as bees. Other plantings, known as larval beds, are designed to attract and support communities of caterpillars that,although they are often regarded as undesirable, mature into beautiful moths and butterflies.
The lawn is planted exclusively in White Clover. It doesn't need to be mowed regularly by a power lawn mower and requires minimal irrigation. Additionally, it is prime graze for groundhogs and Eastern Cottontails and, as such, distracts them from other and flowers and plants.
The large pond provides water for small rodents and birds. It also provides habitat for American Toads, Wood and Leopard frogs, and dragonfly nymphs.
A water features attract small rodents  birds and amphibians. It also provides habitat fordragonfly ...
A water features attract small rodents, birds and amphibians. It also provides habitat fordragonfly nymphs
The entire yard is surrounded by cedars and junipers. Conifers both they act as a windbreak, and also provide cover for roosting birds, particularly in the winter.
Closely planted conifers on the border provide a windbreak that moderates conditions year-round and ...
Closely planted conifers on the border provide a windbreak that moderates conditions year-round and valuable shelter for roosting birds in the winter.
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