Bug Hotel (Spa and Country Club)

As it is Insect Week I’m going to do some insect blogs.

Last year I built a small Bug Hotel and it was quite successful. A few leaf cutter bees and the like turned up and a few things overwintered. This year I decided to expand it. It has now transformed from a small Bug Hotel to something more akin to a Hotel, Spa and Country Club!

I started off with an old aquarium stand as the basic structure, and got some left over materials – Wooden planks, floor tiles, flower pots, logs, straw, hay, pipes and “borrowed” some old clay drainage pipes off my dad.

Taking Shape

Materials

Button the puppy decided to help too

Little Helper

I already had some purchased insect boxes so built it under and around these. I started to then build layers, old sticks, flower pots, floor tiles etc were added. The flower pots were great to balance “floors” on. I also had some old bird feeder guardians that I had filled with leaves last year for overwintering bugs, so these were added too.

Bug Hotel
Adding Layers
More Layers
Filling Up

I tried to make a variety of mini ecosystems for different bugs to use and hide in

Straw And Bricks

Then I put some old logs around it to make it blend in more. Hopefully the bugs will make use of these too

Wood Surround
Blending In

I built it near the Buddleia we already had so insects were already using the area. I also put some lavender around it.

Bug Hotel

It has now had some time in situ and things are growing round it. It’s already being used extensively.

Bug Hotel
Bug Hotel
Closer Up

Here are some of the features:

A Bee Box – used by leaf cutter and Mason Bees
Bee Box

Butterfly House
Butterfly House

Ladybird and Lacewing Box
Ladybird Box

Cut Up Bamboo Canes and some old blocks of wood I drilled holes into
Bamboo

Cones, Clay Drainage pipes and some old weaved bird roosting boxes
Cones

Sawdust section – I’ve put some in the tube and in the flower pot
Sawdust Tubes

More hollowed out bamboo
Bamboo In Clay Tube

Sticks, straw and some rotting wood
Sticks And Straw

Bumblebee box. To the side of it is some straw and old cuttings, sometimes a hedgehog sleeps in there!
Bummblebee Box

Dried leaves for hibernating
Leaves

More Bee tubes. This time suspended not mounted on the fence
Bee Tubes

I don’t know whether all the bits will be used, there may need to be some fine tuning (and more gap filling) but I’ve tried to add lots of variety. I think the next addition will be some broken pots for woodlice to hide under!

It’s a very worthwhile thing to do, just a small one can help the insects in the garden, and it is really good fun to watch. Bugs are amazing and the variety is astonishing. Now I just have to identify them all!