5 DIYs to teach your kids about garden bugs and birds.
Monday, May 4, 2020
Instead of thinking about pest control, encourage pollinators, birds and other beneficial animals with these DIY projects you can do with your kids.
1. Bug hotel
A bug box attracts beneficial insects and gives them safe harbor. While some insects are pests, others can help control those pests and pollinate your garden. Gardeners’ World shows how to make a bug box using scrap wood and other materials you might already have on hand. Go the extra step and teach your kids why encouraging this biodiversity is important for the environment.
2. Worm composting bin
If you want your kids to learn about natural fertilizers and feed your garden without chemicals, building a worm composting bin together is a good place to start. You can house your bin in the garden or, yes, even indoors with these step-by-step instructions from KidsGardening.org.
3. Butterfly feeder
Like bees, butterflies pollinate flowers. That’s vital for the health and diversity of plants year after year. To attract butterflies to your garden, grab a container you would have recycled anyway – a baby food jar, Mason jar or plastic bottle – and turn it into a butterfly feeder. Once you’re done crafting, you’ll fill it with a syrup of simple sugar and water and wait for those beautiful bugs to arrive.
4. Bird feeder
Different birds crave different foods. If you’re looking for songbirds, you’ll want a suet log or a feeder for sunflower seeds and mealworms. Hummingbirds have a diet closer to butterflies’. If you aren’t too worried about who visits your yard, it’s OK to focus on the type of feeder your child wants to make. Go super simple by stringing Cheerios and attaching them to a tree or by covering an empty paper towel roll in peanut butter and bird feed. This wild bird suet feeder and sunflower tower feeder could be excellent projects for older kids.
5. Bird house
From kits to upcycling items you already have to full carpentry projects, building a bird house is a great hands-on project for everyone. Different birds like to nest in different homes, so it’s also an opportunity to learn more about your local species while you’re at it.