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10 years ago

Kevin and I met a man today who has a prairie in his yard.  He showed us around, and you should have seen all the birds!  There were birds everywhere.  You couldn't always see them, but you could tell they were there by all the shaking and rustling of the plants.  It was so cool!


He gave me some seeds and told me to come back later when other plants are going to seed and get more!  So, I guess I'm going to try to get a field of wildflowers going in the yard.

Northern Ontario
10 years ago

Sounds like an interesting place. I also have lots of birds because my place is wild. They like the seeds from the wild flowers. Once you plant them they come up every year. My birds planted me a beautiful garden from the seed they were eating at my feeder at the front window. I had a lot of small sunflowers and lots of flax which has a beautiful blue flower. I didn't know what it was until I looked it up.
Most of my summer birds have left. I just got back from Northern Ontario and have decided to move there next year.

Wild flowers, wild yard
10 years ago

I love flax!  I have been seeding and reseeding with blue flax for a few years now.  It is my favorite of my many wildflowers.  Our family moved to a one acre property 4 years ago.  Our acre was completely bare except for a few trees at the corners, I mean truly bare dirt.  The last owner used the yard as an airport for his ultra lite plane. 


We were so tired of city pavement, we planted 230 trees, and set aside a section for a little meadow, where we preserved the wildflowers that came up of their own accord.  I have seeded the property with wildflowers every year, sticking with natives that are hardy in our climate (hot and dry, with freezing nights only, in winter).  It's the only way to keep out the weeds and not use herbicides, which are very damaging to wildlife, including birds. 


Our property has become a refuge for birds in an area where trees are being chopped down, and the meadow is disked right when the birds and rabbits are nesting.  When we came here there were so many meadowlarks, and now there are very few.  Ditto for rabbits.  But our fruit and wildflowers are bringing birds back to the area. 


I just wish I could see them better.  My eyesight is poor and I can't hold binoculars as my hands shake.  One of the things I am doing is gradually adding to my collection of little stuffed toy birds that play the birds actual song when you squeeze them.  This way I can tell what the birds are by their song. 


But it's great just to have them there, singing, even when I don't know what they are.  We have a lot of goldfinches.  Those I remember from our last house, where they let us come in very close.  They like tiny seeds, as they are tiny birds.  We have many kinds of doves- the kids say every kind of southwestern dove there is has been seen in our yard. 


We have killdeer, which moved here from the field, and many other birds.  I'll give a more complete list after I talk to my teenage kids, who are bird enthusiasts, but the killdeer are making a lot of noise right now.  I'm glad they haven't died out.  We try to accomodate birds in any way we can.  That's important now that so many neighbor's houses are foreclosed so the yards are abandonned.

My life
10 years ago

You remind me of my life. I've always liked trees and the wild. When we first came here there was nothing on the property because it was used for vegetable growing mostly tomatoes. We did have about 6 acres of bush though.
I have 23 acres and we farmed it for cash crops for awhile. We raised chickens and pheasants and what they call silkies which is banty chickens. We quit the crop growing because it was cheaper to buy the grain.
The first I did when we moved here was to plant trees around the house.
The land has now been totally wild for over 20 years and I seem to have more wildlife every year. Especially birds which I feed.
My land is also now covered with elderberries snow berries and lots of honeysuckle bushes. I also planted 3 trumpet vines which are now huge and the hummingbirds and Baltimore orioles love them. We had some kildeers this year also. What I'm worried about is barn swallows. I haven't seen too many the last couple years. I did have one last year but it never returned this year.
The two hundred and fifty trees you planted should make a big difference in a few years and they add value to your property.
I bought several CD's of bird songs and music which I really enjoy. I just let the wild flowers grow this year as I'm getting too tired to look after my garden. I was surprised at what a beautiful wild garden that came up.

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