Council’s Cultivate Wildlife Gardening Competition

Ballymoney, Coleraine, Limavady and Moyle Councils are encouraging local residents to make the most of the longer days by going outdoors and transforming their garden into a mini nature reserve.

The Council’s 2012 Wildlife Gardening Competition invites local residents, businesses, schools and community groups from across the four Council areas to submit an entry in one of the following categories - Private Gardens, School Gardens, Community Gardens and Business Gardens.

The Wildlife Gardening Competition welcomes entries of gardens of all shapes and sizes which may include a variety of features already supporting wildlife. This could be nest boxes, bird tables, ponds or log piles. Judges will be looking for plants that provide food and refuge for wildlife and the sensitive and innovative use of natural resources. For example, making compost and using peat free products, using alternatives to pesticides or the collection and reuse of rain water.

This exciting competition aims to involve and educate the local community on the importance of caring for our environment and encourage the use of wildlife-friendly techniques and materials in gardens.

Rachel Bain, Biodiversity Officer for Ballymoney, Coleraine, Limavady and Moyle Councils commented; “Wildlife gardening is a fantastic way to enjoy your environment and make a difference to local wildlife. There is no excuse for not getting involved in this scheme, even if you don’t have a garden. If you have limited outdoor space why not consider filling window boxes full of lavender which is a great source of nectar for insects and also smells fantastic, creating a pond in a bucket or placing swift boxes in the eaves of your house.

If you are lucky enough to have a larger garden try planting a wildflower meadow which will add a spectacular splash of colour and be a fantastic resource for birds and insects. You can even do your bit for recycling by creating plant pots from old tea pots or wellies, both of which will make a fun and unique feature in your home or garden. The options are endless and this competition really gives you the opportunity to get out there and be creative!”

For further information or an application form log onto www.ballymoney.gov.uk or contact Rachel Bain, Biodiversity Officer tel; (028) 7034 7272 or email; Rachel.bain@ballymoney.gov.uk