For the last My Wild Garden Year challenge of 2018, we'd like you to plant a wildlife-friendly hedge or if you have no room, fruiting trees.
Planting a native hedge is a brilliant way to divide a garden, define boundaries and hide unsightly features, and they are of great value for wildlife, acting as corridors for movement from place to place and for providing food and shelter. Follow these steps to plant your own hedge:
1. Choose some native hedgerow trees to suit what you want, such as Holly, Yew, Hawthorn and Hazel. The best hedges have many different species in them so choose at least four. Choose some evergreen species to provide shelter in the winter.
2. Dig over the site, removing all weeds and roots, then mix in lots of well rotted manure to give your new trees the best start.
3. To get a nice thick hedge, plant 5 plants per metre in two staggered rows.
4. Water well.
5. When the trees are a few years old, consider planting climbers such as
Honeysuckle and bulbs such as Bluebells.
You can get full instructions for planting a hedge by following this link or by clicking the pictures below, as well as more hints and tips for wildlife gardening in December.
Don't forget to send us your pictures on social media using the hashtag #MyWildGardenYear or on email using the subject title 'My Wild Garden Year.