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.
Button the puppy decided to help too
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.
I tried to make a variety of mini ecosystems for different bugs to use and hide in
Then I put some old logs around it to make it blend in more. Hopefully the bugs will make use of these too
I built it near the Buddleia we already had so insects were already using the area. I also put some lavender around it.
It has now had some time in situ and things are growing round it. It’s already being used extensively.
Here are some of the features:
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!