Today is the day I will be championing my front and backyard. Last year I had traveled far and wide in North Texas in pursuit for bird diversity. Winter has changed my tune. My wife and I set out to reconfigure our front and backyards this past summer hoping to attract hummingbirds and butterflies. I had no idea adding new bird feeders we received for Christmas would make our yard the envy of the entire neighborhood.
Our yards are small compared to most. The front yard consists of a single oak tree (we think…) growing erratically, but acts as a “safe space” when birds are in need of retreating from my wife’s garden near the den window. I think safe spaces are much needed in small sanctuaries for birds. Birds have adapted pretty much to the sound of cars driving by. People and predators do have a habit of coming too close. I speak from experience when I say that birds won’t come around to your house if they don’t feel they can retreat somewhere safely and quickly. And you don’t need a large tree for them to scatter in. A simple large native bush will suffice!
Soil and limestone prevent my wife and I from planting large trees. We planted four Crape Myrtles which continue to grow well despite the hard soil conditions. The birds have designated them safe spaces, flying from feeder to feeder.
I am celebrating the most winter diversity in my front and backyard than any year I can remember. Proving that anything is possible as long as you have a plan and stick to it.