The last years the rate of insects has rapidly declined to almost none in my garden. Last summer was extremely hard on the insects due to the drought in Europe.
I cannot do anything about the weather, however I can try to create an insect friendly oasis in my own backyard. The last two years I have been planting more insect friendly bulbs, perennials and bushes in my garden.
Here are some of them:
- Cat Nip
- … and many more
It is my responsibility (and yours too) to make the world more insect friendly.
This spring again focus was on the missing insects. Scientists even spoke of a 75% decrease in insects population in the last 25 years (Germany), with some species almost extinct (*) (**).
Whether it’s credible or not, fact is the last many years there have been fewer and fewer insects where I live, not only in my garden. Ditches are normally mown at least once during summer for safety and to avoid weed spreading. Danish municipalities are no longer cutting all grass, leaving many spaces for insects and other small animals. in some municipalities they even sow summer flowers, creating
However, ditch flowers are not just “weed”. They are mostly perennials, that are all wild cousins of the perennials we have in our gardens. Also many grasses grow in the ditches.
Intensive agricultural farming is also a major insect killing factor. Fields – even organic – are insect killers, when you have no diversity. When the insects are missing, birds, bats and other animals, preying on insects are missing too. When they are missing, larger animals are missing, meaning you end up with a biological wasteland.
Pesticides are another factor. Many pesticides that were common earlier, are illegal today. However, there are still many, many pesticides in use which are made just to kill insects. Eggs, larvae or adult insects, each pesticide is aimed directly to kill at different stages of the life cycle or aimed at specific insects.
Spring and summer this year have been warm and moist. I noticed quite early there were more honey bees, bumble bees and wasps this spring than the past 4-5 years.
The butterflies were all over the lavenders in June and July. Now where the lavenders need a good pruning, butterflies, bees and wasps found my buddleia bushes very attractive. They have been blooming one by one for the last three weeks, now with the butterflies all over them.
All in all, I’m quite confident the insects will return, if we continue the effort to make it attractive for the little ones. Our survival as a green planet is completely depending on them.
(*) The Guardian February 2019 Plummeting insect numbers threaten collapse of nature
(**) The Guardian October 2018 Warning of “ecological Armageddon” after dramatic plunge in insect numbers